Learn about what - better parking facilities? Is there a city anywhere near our size that has more available or less expensive downtown parking?
A wise man speaks because he has something to say; a fool because he has to say something. - Plato
Houston, Atlanta and Denver.Originally Posted by mjblazin
from post 36Originally Posted by CasperITL
Only PHX is cheaper than us (ATL is close but a couple of ATL's parking garages have partially collapsed in the last few months [no one hurt luckily] so they could have gone up)Market Daily parking rate (median) Monthly parking rate (median, unreserved)
Atlanta $12.00 $90.00
Boston $33.00 $460.00
Chicago $30.00 $310.00
Dallas $10.50 $90.00
Denver $12.00 $160.00
Houston $14.00 $175.00
Kansas City, Mo. $11.00 $100.00
Los Angeles $27.25 $196.00
Miami $13.00 $118.00
New York (Midtown) $40.00 $585.00
Philadelphia $24.00 $300.00
Phoenix $8.00 $52.50
San Francisco $28.00 $350.00
Seattle $25.00 $260.00
St. Louis $13.50 $105.00
Washington, D.C. $15.00 $240.00
National average $15.42 $153.79
Dallas tries to clamp down on unfair car booting in Deep Ellum
11:08 AM CST on Monday, December 28, 2009
By RUDOLPH BUSH / The Dallas Morning News
On Friday, lots in Deep Ellum that allow booting will be required to issue receipts, either electronically or through an attendant.
Lots that don't boot cars will not have to issue receipts even if they use towing to enforce payment.
In July, the receipt requirement will expand to all lots in Dallas that boot cars and charge $1 or more per hour or $5 or more as a flat rate.
In January 2011, the receipt rule will be expanded to all lots that boot in the city regardless of price.
Booting companies must also be licensed and risk losing those licenses if they are found to have violated the new ordinance.
City Hall expects the receipts will mark an end to questions about whether drivers paid to park.
Council member Angela Hunt, who represents parts of Deep Ellum and who pushed for the receipt requirement, said she wants drivers to know that they are entitled to proof they paid.
"Do I think this will end all booting problems in Deep Ellum? No, because I still think there will be unscrupulous and unethical booting companies. But the city now has some method of penalizing these people in a forceful way," she said.
For Deep Ellum, losing the bad booting reputation could help the area turn around after years of decline.
That may be happening anyway, with DART Green Line construction now complete and other signs of restored life.
But Annino is eager for widespread complaints about car lots to cease.
"When people come and park their car in the lot, they don't want to keep turning their head back to see if they are getting booted," he said.
At the same time, he agreed with Klundt that not every driver who gets a boot is innocent, he said.
But with the receipt system in place, everyone will know where everyone else stands.
"A lot of people are making excuses they paid, so it works both ways on this deal. It's where's your receipt? There's no excuse if you don't have a receipt," he said.
So what's to stop the crooks from towing your car? I hope they don't resort to that.
What crooks? I would say that 98% of people who are towed off lots in Downtown or Deep Ellum are crooked non-payers. Since they are not customers, the lot owner/operator has no incentive to be nice to them. The lot owner does not get a kickback from the towing company. The owner just wants to free up the scofflaw's spot. Judging from what I have seen happen in Downtown during daylight hours, you need to be a habitual non-payer to be towed from a private surface lot. The big parking corporations that operate the lots view towing as a dirty business, just like the customers. No one wants to tow because there is no money on the back end.Originally Posted by lpepping
In Downtown on a weekend, you could get away with never paying on most lots because towing usually requires a signed signature of management. Most lots are not even audited on weekends unless there is a special event.
So you are saying that most parking lots won't contract with a towing company because it looks bad and there isn't any money in it? If that is true then why do the parking lot companies allow booting?Originally Posted by CasperITL
Those little surface lots are supposed to be turnkey hands-off operations. No employees, no oversight, no security. Someone comes by once a day and collects the money. Most of the parking companies in Dallas are operated by large parking management corporations. They just want the parkers to pay. They really hate to tow or boot cars. Problems arise when the daily cash in the boxes starts to fall off. Sometimes it can be explained by corporate relocations, layoffs or whatever in nearby buildings. Usually, its freeloaders trying to buck the system. Really, only chronic abusers of cheating the operator lead to a tow. The person overseeing the little parking lot probably has to manage 12 other lots like it, plus operate a couple large office tower garages. Last thing he wants is to have to deal with some knucklehead not paying $3 to park when he is trying to keep his $180 a month clientele happy.Originally Posted by lpepping
For someone to start towing cars and/or booting them is really a no win situation. The parking operators do not get a kickback from towing. All that money goes to the towing company. Probably costs the parking operator $20 just to waste time on towing a single car. As far as I know, the large parking operators in downtown do not contract with towing companies. Usually the towing companies provide the red/white signs free of charge for the parking lots and will even install them free.
The parking companies do not even own the lots. They get either a flat management fee of $400-500 a month or a percentage of sales. Since the lots in downtown are undeveloped prime real estate, they command high property taxes. I would say that on a $4 per day parking fee, more than 50% is eaten up by sales tax and property taxes. Many of the lots, after expenses and management fees only result in maybe $750-1000 a month in profit. REITs own some of the lots, others are owned by old Dallas families who once owned buildings on the lot footprint.
It's 2010, and there still aren't parking receipt machines in Deep Ellum
10:25 AM Tue, Jan 05, 2010
Nancy Visser took a stroll through Deep Ellum to kick off the New Year and found that, nope, the parking lot operators didn't bother to put in receipt machines.
She also has word that there don't appear to be any attendants to hand out receipts.
So please remember this: As of Jan.1, cars cannot be booted in parking lots where physical receipts are not issued.
It's the law.
I wonder when that woman walked through Deep Ellum. Most of the lots are only staffed at night.
I'm glad that Houston is running more pedicab companies at night. It solves a lot of problems for me (as a musician that spends lots of late nights in downtown). The pedicabs tend to circle through the "late night zones" and they're a quick and reliable way to get from one part of downtown to the other. The free lots in Houston are literally in BFE, so the pedicab helps me out a lot.
Anyway, my point is that as parking gets more expensive around the SunBelt, we need to come up with more creative solutions for it. I've been to downtown Dallas maybe three times last year, and I never parked in downtown... I always park near CityPlace station and take the DartRail in. Granted, I'm not downtown at night very much, but I find it to be a lot easier to do that.
Unless there is a massive land grab in downtown Dallas, parking will remain at impressively low levels compared to other large metros in the country. And if it does rise, it would be in the city of Dallas's best interest for downtown economic development to drive down the price by owning and operating their own garages at a lesser rate.Originally Posted by totheskies
As long as parking in Las Colinas is free and every other office complex in the metroplex, Downtown Dallas will have to remain lower than most to compete for the business.
As awesome as Victory is, you really have to wonder why those compaines didn't want to invest more of those projects in downtown proper. Some stuff I understand... the link between the "hot areas" of uptown and Oak Lawn, etc. But there's a lot of property available in downtown too.Originally Posted by aygriffith
FYI for anyone seeing this WED 2/10 940am . they are discussing the issue right now. I told Mayor Pro Tem about the continued issues even in Deep Ellum re: enforcement of the laws. It's a pretty good discussion.
Dallas just blows my mind. Downtown Dallas has still not taken off yet, and those people that say "parking" isn't really an issue are crazy. Downtown Dallas needs to be seen as user friendly and a pleasant place to visit. So instead of doing something that would encourage people to come downtown like.. FREE PARKING after 5pm and/or weekends....the city of Dallas imposes parking 7 days a week. Another brilliant decision for DTD!! Free parking was one of the first things Fort Worth did to get folks downtown!!!Originally Posted by DFWCRE8TIVE
Is parking everywhere in Fort worth free? I thought only a few garages that are part of Sundance Square offered free parking.Originally Posted by vman
While the parking in DTD is a bit backward, the Dallas 360 Plan should refocus on the issue. Marketing the CityPark garages better (and adding new ones to the system) would also help. There's even talk of adding dynamic parking signs (see the recent presentation by Dallas 360).
Bass family subsidizes the parking in DT fort worth. As much as I hate meters, they have that going for them in FW a limited area.
Definitely not. It costs $20 to park for an hour next to the Tarrant County courthouse. (It costs $9 to park all day at the Dallas Civil Courthouse).Originally Posted by DFWCRE8TIVE
I'm very aware that the "free" parking in DTFW is subsidized, but not by the Basses, but by the city. I posted a story a couple of years back that there were rumblings about the subsidy because the Basses themselves receive a subsidy for allowing free parking in their garages, even though they owned Sudance Sq. I think the story even hinted that some wondered if ending free parking in DTFW would discourage visitors.Originally Posted by UrbanHope
But my point was the city of FW was aware that free parking for visitors, no matter how they pulled it off, would encourage visitors to downtown. I lived in FW and loved that I could pop into downtown after work, pull up and park anywhere on the street, run in have a beer and burger, and not once worry about having a ticket on my car when I walked out. The city of Dallas should be doing any and everything to encourage visitiors. Yet as I said before, DTD continues to focus on large iffy projects and ignore smaller issues that might garner bigger results.
Parking in Dallas is dirt cheap at nights and on the weekend. Beer and a burger in a downtown eatery will get you close to $15. Those people can afford to put a fiver or less into the bin for at an open lot. Free parking simply results in people parking and keeping the spot, helping one person. Having lots of metered spots full with no increase in traffic does not help downtown.
I thought our policy was to get people to use mass transit. Doesn't providing an incentive to drive to downtown run contrary to that policy?
That logic of "cheap" parking as opposed to free parking is really working for downtown. There's something about the word "free" that people love. Charging people to park just because they can afford to pay doesn't seem to be working for downtown either. That just sounds like you're milking them. FW's free parking, especially by the city, tells people that the city wants you to come downtown and gives you an incentiive to do so. What incentive right now is the city giving anyone to come to downtown Dallas, besides stretching the truth about how great it is? I don't think FW and Dallas are comparable on many fronts, but downtown renewal is one area where FW has kicked Dallas' ass....the city actually gave up something and got something big in return. Dallas wants to charge you to park on mostly quiet, deserted streets, and then wonder why so many folks bypass DTD for Uptown. Hell, I live downtown, spend more leisure time in Uptown... where I never pay to park.Originally Posted by mjblazin
Last edited by vman; 10 February 2010 at 05:24 PM.
What exactly are these "large iffy projects" you're talking about?Originally Posted by vman
It is the same idea as free restrooms. There are plenty of restrooms downtown for people that are eating or spending money. I think we want to cater to those spending money over those not spending money. Every time I am downtown I valet, then walk to other places and then pick up my car from the valet when done. Then I do not have to deal with finding parking, etc...Originally Posted by vman
Downtown Fort worth pretty much has one central area (sundance sq) opposed to Downtown Dallas that has quite a few areas that people go to.
The cheep parking places in Dallas are not really clearly marked -- I know City Park-- but I want to know in big numbers exactly what i will be charged before pulling into a parking garage... I want to know that i am not going to go for a beer and have a $10 parking fee to pay.
What Free parking tells me is A. I wont return with a boot or a parking ticket. B. I only have to worry about the cost of the food and drinks that i buy. C. weather someone buys anything or not people go to where people are so there is value in people who never spend a dime.
The City could start with the future Pacific Plaza parking lots that they now own and the parking lot that will be Belo Gardens and give free parking at night and at weekends at least.
^The lot on Pacific Plaza should at least be turned into a CityPark garage, with a sign clearly stating it is city owned and charging a flat, low rate on nights and weekends (this is very important because of its proximity to Main Street Garden). I noticed the new video boards have a slide advertising the CityPark garages but don't recall any mention of the night/weekend rate, which is its only "key differentiator" from other lots.
As for the one on Belo Gardens, I think construction is supposed to start soon so it wouldn't help to do a pilot program there.
Sooo if people park free, they won't spend money??...that's really logical. And I guess we can be the only major (dead) downtown where people are forced to valet. I go way to many places in this city where I don't have to pay to park...downtown is just about the only place where I do so on a regular basis. And I don't valet anywhere, but according to you, I should valet to partronize downtown establishments...the few that are open after 6pm. That really makes downtown look so much more attractive than Uptown, Mockingbird Station, Lower Greenville, Bishop Arts, and Knox Henderson. I have yet to pay for parking or valet in any of these places. And they're lively and full of people, but I SHOULD pay to park or valet to visit DTD on a sunny saturday afternoon when there's hardly a soul on the street???Originally Posted by downtownguy25
I'm not even saying free parking would work in DTD. I am saying at least try it before you take away the one measly "perk" (free parking..sometimes) that visitors have in DTD. Downtown Dallas consistently does things backwards, IMO.
Last edited by vman; 11 February 2010 at 03:52 PM.
That's true. It's so frustrating sometimes when I try to hang downtown on the weekends and come back to see a parking ticket because I went over my time on the meter by like 5 minutes. Actually, on my way back home I saw so many parking tickets on cars parked on the meters. What a deterrent.
How hard can it be for the City Council to figure out that people should pay to park in Dallas Monday - Friday, 8:00 am - 5:00 pm?
From your many posts here, you've made it very clear that you don't like downtown. Why on earth do you live there then?Originally Posted by vman
With (untrue) statements like these, your dislike of downtown borders on atagonistic:
"And I guess we can be the only major (dead) downtown where people are forced to valet."
"...when there's hardly a soul on the street?"
What exactly is your agenda here? Because you clearly have one.
No, I was saying if you dont have the buck or two to pay for parking why are you going to be downtown paying for more expensive food or drinks.Originally Posted by vman
because it's fun to hang out with all the tall buildings, duh.Originally Posted by downtownguy25
Then it is going to cost you with higher priced drinks and parking costs.Originally Posted by tamtagon
OK, so they'll just go to uptown...
As a city taxpayer, there is nothing wrong with choosing uptown over downtown. We still collect the same taxes, the most important, maybe the only important factor. It does not make sense for the city to subsidize parking in one area to only transfer the same sales tax revenue to another area.
Just because I'm being truthful about downtown being dead...sorry, but it often is. Doesn't mean I hate downtown or have some sort of agenda ( I don't get that at all). I'm commenting alot on this particular topic, because once again, downtown Dallas has done something totally ass backwards (IMO) . I think downtown Dallas has much promise, but after six years of living down here I'm growing frustrated with the slow progress. I actually love dtown Dallas, but will admit this is probably the last time I'm renewing my lease.Originally Posted by elmstreetdallas
City Hall, City Planners Want to Take a Long, Hard Look at Downtown Parking Problems
By Robert Wilonsky in News You Can Actually Use, ActuallyThu., Feb. 11 2010 @ 3:05PM
I see here that on Tuesday, the city council's Economic Development Committee has on its agenda a proposed downtown parking study. Since City Hall's more or less closed between now and Tuesday (for, in order, a All-Star snow day, a furlough day and President's Day), and since the briefing docs have yet to be posted, I called DowntownDallas president John Crawford to see what's what.
Essentially, he says, this is an addendum to the Downtown Dallas 360 plan that's due to the city council in July or August. Crawford says that "after some initial conversations with downtown stakeholders," it was decided that MIG -- the firm to which the city's paying $515,000 for the new downtown master plan -- needed to put more emphasis on downtown parking. Problem is, Crawford says, that wasn't a significant piece of the original plan, and so money will need to be shifted from the city's parks program to cover the costs of a downtown parking study. How much money? "We're not sure yet," he says.
Parking, though, goes "hand in glove in terms of what they're trying to do" with Downtown Dallas 360, he tells Unfair Park.
"Parking, as we've gone through this process, continues to raise its head as a critical and important issue, and we want to make sure we take the time to touch every base to find the best route to a better solution," Crawford says. "It's not complicated. Hell, everybody likes to talk about parking and has an opinion. It's one of those subjects everybody's concerned about but not everybody knows a lot about because there are so many moving pieces."
I ask him why this wasn't covered in the initial deal with MIG. To which Crawford responds, "It was looked at at the beginning and all through the process, but what has been uncovered and when you get into a study is, it's like peeling an onion. There are just so many layers, and we determined, as we talked to stakeholders, we needed to make sure that particular area was covered more than what was provided for in the initial [request for proposals]. It wasn't that parking wasn't on the dance card, but as we got into this and thought about connectivity, it was pretty obvious that area needs more attention."
Maybe you recall: Last time I spoke with Crawford about downtown parking, it was due to the number of complaints from folks who'd been improperly booted by parking-lot operators. That issue was taken care of by council yesterday; no more booting without paper receipts begins tonight, matter of fact. Crawford and I also got into what's become a familiar question: Why no free parking downtown?
He says that's something that'll be addressed in this study, should council gives its OK to shift money around, among other things.
"We'll look at cost of parking, the number of parking spaces, where it should be," he says. "For example, if we put in a streetcar -- not if but when -- where it runs dictates what kind of parking there will be and where it might be. Those kind of things are important. There are a huge number of issues: valet, on-street, parking garages, where they should be, who should pay for them. It's a pretty broad subject as you start drilling into it, and as we got into the mission we determined we needed to drill into it even further."
From the Observer:
By Daniel Rodrigue, Thursday, Feb. 25 2010
... Mayor Pro Tem Dwaine Caraway, ... wants parking meters downtown vanished. Pronto.
"I really want you to hear what I'm saying, and I'm not trying to beat up on anybody," Caraway said. "We have a dead -- a D-E-A-D -- downtown. And one reason for that is because people don't want to come down and have to hustle to get a parking meter." He wrapped up his rant by asking, "Am I crazy?"
"We are running businesses away," Caraway said. His suggestion: "Put a hood over those meters!"
He directed his colleagues' attention to Designs East, a florist at Elm Street and Central Expressway, and said businesses like that are hurt because someone can't just duck in to grab a rose. But he insisted that if the parking meters downtown were hooded, and parking was free, people would start coming downtown more often, wallets in hand.
I fully understand that the Mayor Pro Tem has good intentions, but I think he's getting carried away again by grandstanding for a problem solution which has absolutely no chance of being effective - just like the proposal to make it against the law to wear sagging pants. If downtown did not have metered street parking, the only people who would park on the street are the people who get to work early and don't want to pay to park in a garage or lot. It's just that simple, and it's just that obvious.
Without meters, street parking would be 100% occupied from 8:00 am - 5:00 pm by office workers, and the people who want to come downtown and dash into a florist to get a rose would have to find the nearest parking lot/garage because some office worker is happy to leave his/her car on the street for eight hours.
Parking meters ration a limited resource. It's not a question whether you want them. As long as the resource is limited, you have to have something like them.
If there are city council folks looking for a public relations victory, then they can suggest downtown's metered parking be free on the weekends and after five o'clock.
I cannot help but think there will be city council members who try to gain political capital in the search for good downtown parking paradigm.
Odd that they would go ahead with these when Downtown Dallas is just not working on a parking study (and not published yet)...
Belo Garden Site's About to Get a $1.6 Million Scrubbing; Downtown's Gonna Get New Meters
By Robert Wilonsky, Monday, May. 3 2010 @ 8:36AM
And now, to another burning question: Will the city ever upgrade its parking meters to allow for credit cards? Well, since you asked, yes, as a matter of fact. According to a memo First Assistant City Manager Ryan Evans sent to the Public Safety Committee on Friday, the council's going to be asked next week to renew ACS's contract to operate meters and collect parking fines. And one stipulation of the deal is the installation of "500 new high-tech parking meters that will accept credit cards as well as coins." And: They're solar-powered! Looks like Dwaine Caraway didn't win this one.
And, there's this: Presently, there's more or less a quota system in place: Per a 2008 council briefing, There's "$5.9 M annually in parking revenue (ticket, meter/lot & permit revenue) to the City based on issuance of 198,000 citations." According to the new deal, there's "no minimum citation requirement." And: Ticket-writers will one day have the means to use their hand-held ticket-writers to photograph violators. Which would avoid nonsense like this, one assumes.
It will be good to finally see these new meters go in. Dallas is about 10 years behind the rest of the top 10 cities when it comes to parking meter technology.
I also hope that some meters are removed in certain locations as part of a comprehensive DT parking plan.
A wise man speaks because he has something to say; a fool because he has to say something. - Plato
but which fine Dallas philanthropist(s) would subsidize such a thing? :/Originally Posted by tamtagon
Agree, it's about efffing time!! And I"ll be glad to see all the ugly outdated parking meters removed from the streets. Every time I"m in downtown Houston, I"m shocked at how nice the street looks without those ugly parking meters. And I'll also agree: Free evening and weekend parking. I can't believe DTD still hasn't tried that.Originally Posted by Mballar
The meters downtown are already free in the evening.Originally Posted by vman
All of them?? I've seen some that are free after 6 and I think I've seen others that go till midnight. Then a friend of mine got a ticket parked under Woodall Rogers last weekend. And if they are free....advertise it for pete's sake. I heard a commerical for Sundance Square last week and the free downtown parking was mentioned twice. And it should be free ALL DAY on the weekends.Originally Posted by DFWCRE8TIVE
No, not all of them. The meters in the business district are generally free after 6, but near the West End and in Deep Ellum they are different (some free during the day, but charge at night). I agree that it is very confusing, as meters on each street are different. Hopefully the parking study that is part of the Downtown Dallas 360 Plan will help solve some of the issues (and provide better marketing). The CityPark garages are subsidized by the city but are not effectively marketed.Originally Posted by vman
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