Parking Requirements Bringing Indianapolis Down

There’s a lot going on around the Streetsblog Network today. From A Place of Sense, in Indianapolis, comes a post about that city’s parking policies. A developer there, seeking to renovate an abandoned apartment building in an area with many parking lots, requested a variance from the city’s requirement that developments provide their own off-street parking. The request was denied, and the building will remain vacant for the foreseeable future.

The post is particularly timely in the light of the new report about the importance of sensible parking policy to livable cities that was released yesterday by the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy (ITDP). Here’s what A Place of Sense has to say:

1733NMeridian_774960.JPGParking requirements are keeping this building vacant. (Photo: via A Place of Sense)

I think it is time that Indianapolis accepts that off-street parking
requirements are the bane of true urban renewal. The minimum parking
requirements are a senseless way to devalue our Central Business District. They are an
existential threat to urban life, and therefore the core identity of
Indianapolis.;

This situation is yet another lost opportunity for a representative of
the City of Indianapolis to address the real infrastructural problems
that have ruined the city.  Indianapolis I love you, but you’re
bringing me down.

More from around the network: The WashCycle and FABB Blog on proposed cuts to spending on bicycle infrastructure in Maryland and Virginia. New Geography has a post that asks, What is the answer to the suburban question? And Boston Biker links to some delightful Hungarian PSAs promoting cycling (one of them is even mildly racy).

  • Larry Littlefield

    “A developer there, seeking to renovate an abandoned apartment building in an area with many parking lots, requested a variance from the city’s requirement that developments provide their own off-street parking. The request was denied, and the building will remain vacant for the foreseeable future.”

    Perhaps NYC’s parking regulations are not as anti-urban as some believe. Here, pre-1961 (last major zoning overhaul) buildings may always be occupied by any lawful use regardless of compliance with post-1961 parking rules.

    Where this has generated the most controversy is when storefronts are occupied by places of assembly such as funeral homes, restaurants and catering halls. Last I was aware of the issue, people in Bay Ridge were nuts about places of assembly that offered “valet parking,” which was really just having someone park the car somewhere in the neighborhood in competition with residents.

  • ‘Car-free’ condo: 42 stories, no parking.
    A controversial 42-story condo building that will be built without permanent parking spots cleared a key hurdle yesterday.

    The Toronto-East York community council overruled city staff skeptical about the dearth of parking to allow a plan that provides for only nine car-share rental spots, plus 315 spaces for bicycles.”

    See http://www.yourhome.ca/homes/newsfeatures/article/696394 for more information.

  • Kevin

    In Miami two major residential high-rise buildings (Loft Downtown and Loft 2) were recently built in Downtown Miami with NO parking, and it’s been extremely successful. None, zilch, nada.

    People might think it impossible in a city with so much love for its cars, but it’s definitely possible even here in Miami, and it’s why the neighborhoods of Downtown Miami and Brickell are extremely popular and are the fastest-growing neighborhoods in the city. Because transit is readily available, it’s pedestrian-friendly, and an urban lifestyle is therefore truly possible.

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

Shoup to O’Toole: The Market for Parking Is Anything But Free

|
We’re reprinting this reply [PDF] from UCLA professor Donald Shoup, author of the High Cost of Free Parking, to Randal O’Toole, the libertarian Cato Institute senior fellow who refuses to acknowledge the role of massive government intervention in the market for parking, and the effect this has had on America’s car dependence. It’s an excellent […]

Advocates: New Parking Requirements Make Housing More Expensive

|
Reforming New York City parking policy is a critical component of reducing automobile use and building better public spaces. It’s becoming increasingly clear that rethinking how we store cars can help address New York City’s housing crisis as well. Requiring parking not only creates traffic, it also prevents housing from being built and drives up […]