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New parking study looks to open more spots Downtown Austin

The Downtown Austin Alliance will present a new, year-long parking study to the city’s Mobility Committee on Wednesday. (CBS Austin)

The Downtown Austin Alliance will present a new, year-long parking study to the city’s Mobility Committee on Wednesday.

The over 80-page study is a “first of its kind” in a way, says Dewitt Peart, CEO of the alliance. It incorporates private parking outlets with public lots and garages. Parking behavior was monitored over a year, data was collected to determine popular times and hot spots for parking and 19 recommendations look to make parking easier to find and potentially help alleviate downtown traffic.

The study found 30 percent of traffic in the downtown area is from drivers looking for parking.

“Parking is so emotional to people,” said Peart, “Everyone feels they need a parking space, when they want it, where they want it. It always doesn’t work that way.”

One of the recommendations include making parking outside of downtown cheaper while possibly charging more in popular places of downtown like Rainey, 6th Street, Congress and the lower Shoal Creek area.

“Price the parking so you balance out the supply and demand,” he said.

Other recommendations include:

  • Partnership between public and private parking garages
  • Allowing the public to park in private garages during certain time frames
  • Work with CapMetro to take commuters from a remote parking area to downtown
  • Add enforcement to keep people from staying in one on-street spot for a full day
  • Making down signage easier to understand
  • Change the way the city manages downtown parking by focusing on “stimulating use of both on-street and off-street spaces”


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