Downtown Parking

I am going to post some information on Parking here as it becomes available, however I wanted to first share what the current city goals are for public parking downtown. Our policies are consistent with this.

  1. Revenues from downtown parking should fully cover the costs of operating, maintaining and repaying debt for the parking utility.
  2. On street spots should be available to support businesses at the street level.
  3. Longer term parking belongs in ramps or at remote locations.
  4. Rates and policies should be used to maximize the availability of parking for those who most need it.
  5. Transit should be designed to be an alternative for all day downtown car storage for employees.

Every time we change anything we hear complaints. However I believe that most of these changes are supportive of these goals.

In the near future Parking Ramp #6 near the Hilton property will be opening up. The Bloom project will replace many of the spots lost when the 2nd street ramp (which is at the end of its life) comes down. Finally there is discussion of a future Parking Ramp #7 somewhere downtown in the future. All new ramps are designed to be accessible and redevelop-able with flat floors.

2 comments

  1. So the businesses downtown want parking for their customers. What about parking for the employees of those businesses? Our daughter works 40-50 hours a week at a downtown business and struggles everyday to find parking. And that is only going to increase as more businesses open. Who wants to work down there when they can’t find parking?
    Also why does the state get 2/3 of a parking ticket? Just curious.

  2. Only twisted minds would assert that we need to raise parking fees to pay for “the costs of operating, maintaining and repaying debt for the parking utility.” Achieving revenue neutral costs by increased fees is a zero sum game. And we poor slobs that are expected to predict how long we will be, spend an anxious rather than relaxed time eating our for feat of a ticket we cannot afford. Added on to this already big stick is the fine, the hassle of fighting a fine, the problems when the cost of a parking ticket cannot be met until after the first 10 days and the fee then makes it out of reach.

    This is how people end up in jail without bail. Because they are poor. Then comes job loss, family eviction, and destroyed lives.

    The Council never? Rarely? uses carrot to make social compliance happen.

    And “justice” based on money is inherently discriminatory. The differential between someone earning $7-9 an hour with very little discretionary income, if any, and the “never miss it” class of the wealthy means that one section of the residents know they can pay their way out of anything as annoying as a parking ticket on the day they get the ticket.

    Others, not so easily. Once again I point our the fallacy of Nick Campion’s position that the reason we spend money on giving and enforcing parking tickets is to prevent Mayo and other employees from parking on the street all day.

    Solve the problem of employees parking all day and preventing customers from getting to other local businesses, but not by charging parking fees or escalating fines, but some other method like tagging employee cards plates to identify whether their vehicle is parked appropriately.

    #FareFree transit should at a minimum be investigate as to viability before any further transit decisions are made. People pay with precious minutes of their lives on the limited, pathetic, bus hours and routes in Rochester. No on and off privileges, lengthy delays, lengthy trips, many you can’t get there from here bus transfers sucking even more life out of our overworked and busy days.

    Maybe some changes at the other end could be considered. Like adjusting shifts to accommodate employee time lost by the longer rides by giving them an extra hour on the top and end of their journey. At full pay.

    Like implementing cross town traffic with smaller “feeder” buses immediately to provide transit to grocery stores and other places that do not begin and end on 2nd St by the Mayo. Run them during commute times to add to efficiency and less waiting / wasting time waiting for the big buses.

    Double check the alleged flat floors because I am pretty sure that the slope of the floors of ramp 6 are 5 degrees, I presume for drainage.

    The city must provide dedicated handicapped city street parking for people with disabilities. It is the LAW.

    BTW, here is the map of parking spaces downtown that I hope staff will keep up to date:

    https://www.rochestermn.gov/home/showdocument?id=14696

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