DC Residents: Parking Reforms Don’t Go Far Enough

Washington, DC, is part of the wave of cities rethinking laws that force developers to build parking, which increase the cost of housing and induce traffic. As Greater Greater Washington reported earlier this week, regulations that require a minimum amount of parking at businesses and residences are slated to be rolled back or eliminated in many parts of the city.

Residents of one DC neighborhood say the city could do more to reform mandatory parking minimums. Photo: Thisisbossi/Flickr

Those adjustments tend to inspire NIMBY opposition, since residents who park on the street believe parking minimums shield them from competition for curb space. But GGW‘s David Alpert was out at a recent public meeting in one neighborhood where residents had a very different type of complaint: They said the parking requirements aren’t being rolled back aggressively enough.

Dupont ANC commissioner Kevin O’Connor summed up the tenor of Tuesday’s Penn Quarter meeting on the zoning update simply: “Consensus of Ward 2 zoning meeting seems to be that [reducing the] parking minimums need[s] to go even further than proposed.”

During the question and answer session, the dominant theme was that the update is moving in the right direction, but could do even more.

At the new AIA center in the Penn Quarter, speaker after speaker thanked the Office of Planning for all their hard work on the zoning update, including many meaningful improvements, but also expressed hope that the update could do a little more. A few people asked about opportunities to adjust the height limit. One lamented new rules that limit a rooming house to 8 unrelated people.

Elsewhere on the Network today: Ride Solutions takes a look at one of the collateral costs of road building. Mobilizing the Region reports that the state of Connecticut is eager to learn from New Jersey’s example in promoting transit-oriented development. And Bike Delaware shows how car culture has restricted children’s freedom dramatically over the last four generations.