The City of Emeryville is considering major changes to citywide parking regulations, hoping to address ongoing resident & business dissatisfaction with a lack of available parking in high-traffic areas.
During two community workshops on November 16, residents and business owners were asked to weigh in on proposed ideas that would change the existing residential parking permit system, add short and long-term metered spaces, and other parking management strategies. Also discussed were available parking meter technologies.
Residents spoke of vastly different and competing demands for parking within their neighborhoods, illustrating to staff the challenge that lies ahead in confronting each area’s parking problems. A major complaint focused attention on commuters who park their vehicles in unrestricted parking areas.
“With free parking available all-day on the streets around 40th [Street], people drive to the Park Avenue district/40th Street retailers and get on Transbay buses for a shorter and more convenient commute,” said Jeff Arko, a Park Avenue District resident. “I would like to see neighborhood parking passes available to residents. This will remove ‘all day’ parkers from other neighborhoods while still allowing locals to park on the street.”
Concern about the changes spilled over the city limits as well, as a resident from North Oakland spoke about concerns that a change in parking policies would create a spillover effect on her neighborhood just across the city limits.
Business owners also peppered city staff and officials with their concerns that a lack of nearby parking has affected their customers and staff, especially in the North Hollis neighborhood. They noted in particular how contractors for the numerous neighborhood construction projects have taken up many of the area’s available parking spaces. Some noted that this leads their customers to circle for as long thirty minutes or give up entirely.
Solutions proposed include providing off-site parking for construction crews, encouraging construction firms to limit the number of workers who bring their vehicles to the job site, and instituting a parking permit program. “If you consider how many tens and dozens of contracted construction workers and the vehicles they drive coming in to work, it really impacts the parking in the area,” said Alvin Shen co-owner of Best Coast Burritos.
One thing that both stakeholders did agree on was a desire for the City to focus on enforcement. Perception among attendees was that the City performs little to no parking enforcement, discouraging space turnover and encouraging scofflaws. The Emeryville PD currently staffs only a single parking enforcement officer for the entire city.
The plan will update the 2010 report shown below:
The Emeryville Parking Management Plan is an update to a 2010 Parking Management study commissioned by consulting firm Wilbur Smith Associates (now CDM Smith). Most of the recommendations from the study were left unimplemented following a downturn in the economy. The updated study will look at parking issues citywide, excluding the Bay Street Mall area that already has meters and enforcement.
The consultants will release a draft report of the plan update in January for further feedback from the City and the community. In the spring, the City will bid out for parking technology vendors and adopt a new residential parking permit policy, with summertime being eyed for full implementation of the plan.
More information on the plan update and the online survey can be found at emeryvilleparkingmanagement.com.
Timeline For Implementation:
October 2017: Collect baseline data.
November 2017: Get community input. Community workshops to be held on Thursday, 11/16.
January 2018: Release draft report.
February 2018: Go back to community, including Planning Commission and City Council.
Spring 2018: Issue Request for Proposals (RFPs) and select vendors for parking technologies and adopt Residential Parking Permit (RPP) Policy.
Summer 2018: Install and test new parking management technologies. Roll out permits in areas concerned with spillover from priced areas.