The City of Sacramento, California, has announced a reduction in the number of parking spaces that new commercial and urban housing projects will be required to build.
According to the Sacramento Bee, city planners say existing parking rules cause some would-be business owners to back away. For some apartment complexes and residential buildings, parking requirements make up 20 per cent of a project’s cost. Parking spaces also steal space that could be used for living units.
The City Council approved this month a sweeping set of new business-parking rules, including allowing some higher-density apartment buildings to provide less than one parking place per unit.
The new rules allow businesses to build more parking than required, if they choose to. Parking officials hope to sign agreements with private parking lot owners to allow drivers to park in underused lots during day and night in certain commercial and downtown areas.
The idea behind the new rules is to encourage more development that is transit- and pedestrian-friendly, reducing the need for people who live and work downtown to use cars. The new policies have drawn support from builders, lower-income housing advocates, as well as pedestrian and transit advocates.