http://paloaltoonline.com/square/print/index.php?i=3&t=19918


Town Square

On Deadline blog: That curbside parking space in front of my home is MINE!!!'

Original post made by Jay Thorwaldson, editor emeritus, on Jan 11, 2013

The current dialogue over parking requirements in downtown Palo Alto and other commercial areas echoes community debates and controversies that date back decades. There has been no clear resolution and even affected residents express differing views.

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Comments

Like this comment
Posted by Craig Laughton
a resident of College Terrace
on Jan 11, 2013 at 4:03 pm

Jay,

Please tell us all where you live in Palo Alto. I am sure we can arrange for the public street spots, in front of your house, to become occupied by those who do live in this town.

You seem to be somewhat aloof, Jay, like Larry Klein. Surely, you still live in Palo Alto, right, Jay?


Like this comment
Posted by Not an issue
a resident of Community Center
on Jan 11, 2013 at 4:11 pm

Craig---give it a rest. Public spots are public spots--- available to everyone. Get over it and move on.


Like this comment
Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jan 11, 2013 at 4:17 pm

The people who are making most noise about parking right now are the near to downtown residents. A few years ago, it was the College Terrace residents.

The point I would like to make is that anyone who lives near to where people want to go are at sometimes affected by people parking outside their homes. The fact that sometimes may be every day, or just when the venue is busy, can still be a big nuisance to those who live nearby.

People chose to live near downtown and they knew that would be an area of difficult parking when they chose to live there. Likewise, people living near a park must have realised that at weekends the parks would mean cars outside their homes. People living near a school realise that parking at school drop off and pick up times as well as some evenings and weekends, would be a problem. People living near a community center, shopping, coffee shops, etc. etc. etc. should have had no surprise that the curb outside their house would at times be used by others.

I do have some sympathy, but can't say that these people should be surprised.

Our parks although thought of as neighborhood, often have soccer or baseball games from residents all over the city. Our schools once were small compared to the enrollments now.

Downtown needs a better parking system. Get the cars off the streets and into the lots, not by parking permits of any type, but by pay per hour machines in all the lots. Make parking in the lots easier and cheap. Don't look on parking prices as a source of revenue but as a means to encourage fair use available space. Stop making the parking complicated and then encourage them with availabilty of spaces signs on the outside of all lots.


Like this comment
Posted by Craig Laughton
a resident of College Terrace
on Jan 11, 2013 at 4:26 pm

"Craig---give it a rest"

No, I won't. Our neighborhoods need a certain amount of protection.

[Portion removed by Palo Alto Online staff.]


Like this comment
Posted by Not an issue
a resident of Community Center
on Jan 11, 2013 at 4:32 pm

What are you complaining about, Craig. Your neighborhood has a parking permit system. Protection from what? Use of the streets,that our tax dollars paid for.? [Portion removed by Palo Alto Online staff.]

BTW, jay, yoriko moved into one of our main streets and has spent decades trying to get traffic from her street onto other streets-- no sympathy for her.


Like this comment
Posted by Craig Laughton
a resident of College Terrace
on Jan 11, 2013 at 4:42 pm

"What are you complaining about, Craig. Your neighborhood has a parking permit system"

Yes, we in CT, finally, have a residential parking permit program (RPPP). It took a long time with many dedicated citizens to make it happen. However, I am not just about College Terrace. I think that all neighborhoods, in Palo Alto, that are afflicted with parking maximus should be protected.


Like this comment
Posted by Not an issue
a resident of Community Center
on Jan 11, 2013 at 4:48 pm

[Post removed by Palo Alto Online staff.]


Like this comment
Posted by dinner time
a resident of Downtown North
on Jan 11, 2013 at 4:55 pm

A parking spot is a parking spot.

It' ain't your property.

[Portion removed by Palo Alto Online staff.]


Like this comment
Posted by palo alto mom
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Jan 11, 2013 at 5:02 pm

Not an issue - We need a residential parking system for much of our City. The families on Edgewood and Newell did not "know when they bought their homes" that East Palo Alto would ban parking on a nearby street and that the new owners of the apartments in EPA would start charging for parking causing up to 50 cars to park in Crescent Park instead. Many residents of Professorville and Downtown lived there long before there were so many offices Downtown when most of the cars were visiting retail establishments. You live in Community Center, an area usually unaffected by rogue parking except during swim meets and the occasional City event in Palo Alto, so you shouldn't judge.

Yes, parking is public. But if enough residents of Palo Alto would like to be able to park near their homes, we should do something to make that happen. Residential parking on one side of the street (such as Castilleja has voluntarily done) would preserve both neighborhood parking and public parking.


Like this comment
Posted by Area Man
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jan 11, 2013 at 5:08 pm

Craig, why are you attacking Jay? He's just suggesting that the powers that be keep in mind the history of past battles over parking in Palo Alto, and he recounted those battles -- not taking sides, as far as I could tell.

I think you are out of line.


Like this comment
Posted by Not an issue
a resident of Community Center
on Jan 11, 2013 at 5:12 pm

Craig-- college terrace is big. We need to make sure the house you live in has a parking problem. We know the street. We just need the number. Everyone has " skin in the game ", since we are all taxpayers that pay for upkeep of the streets you want to privatize.
People like you and PA mom need to realize there is no right to a parking spot on a public street by your house.


Like this comment
Posted by palo alto mom
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Jan 11, 2013 at 5:44 pm

Not an issue - I don't ever have a parking problem in front of my own house and have plenty of space in my driveway. But MANY cities have parking permit programs. This does not eliminate the "right" for the public to park on a street, but it does preserve a reasonable amount of neighborhood parking for the residents.


Like this comment
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Jan 11, 2013 at 9:32 pm

Hmmm is a registered user.

Uh, what parking restrictions on Woodland? I think that's a rumor w/no truth to it.


Like this comment
Posted by Nick Baldo
a resident of Menlo Park
on Jan 15, 2013 at 3:43 pm

Nick Baldo is a registered user.

I guess I'll just never understand this issue. When I walk through Palo Alto all I see is empty driveways (which, sadly, are mandated by law), and even at peak times for parking it seems there are open spots on pretty much every block. Garages are now mostly used for storing random junk plus a refrigerator. If you want more parking spots available, the appropriate policy is to charge money for parking so that it is allocated to users with the highest willingness to pay. As Mr. Thorwaldson reminds us, these streets are public rights of way, and in my opinion they ought to be dedicated to public use.

Turning the space into bike lanes is the obvious answer, but even metered or status-quo free parking are way better than some residential permit system that amounts to outright theft. Everyone has ownership rights to the street, not just local residents who make a stink at city council meetings. Hopefully one day some public spirit will return to this area.


Like this comment
Posted by bru
a resident of Crescent Park
on Jan 16, 2013 at 9:55 pm

bru is a registered user.

I don't like driving through all the areas of Palo Alto and seeing all the cars parked on the side of the street. It is unsightly, a hazard, make it easier for criminals and hard for anyone who needs to park legitimately to find a place.

That said, there is no good solution to this since the city seems to have decided to always err on the side of not providing parking spaces ... like somehow the lack of parking places is going to magically create the parking places needed or that people who cannot afford to park will sell their cars and take the bus.

There should be some kind of review of this kind of thinking. I would not want to pay millions of dollars or more to be stuck never being able to find a parking place in front of my own house, for me, my service people, my friends or deliveries?

This is just insane. Parking places is one place where "socialism" is called for. The city should build as many parking structures as it takes, and demand that large new construction projects build parking beneath their floors until we have enough safe, free, easy to access parking to allow our city to be accessible and easily traveled, and sightly.

I am against pay for parking. For God's sake, now even when you go to the doctor or the hospital you have to pay to park .... parking is a necessity, and cars are not going away, just deal with it.