THURSDAY: Restricted Parking Zone in West Seattle Junction? Tell SDOT what you think

Another major transportation issue is up for public comment tomorrow (Thursday) night, so we’re reminding you now:

Be at the Senior Center of West Seattle, 6:30-8 pm Thursday (February 28th), to comment on the proposed West Seattle Junction Restricted Parking Zone – shown above. As announced by the city:

SDOT staff will give a brief presentation at 6:30 PM.

Public comment will begin at 6:45 PM and is limited to 2 minutes per person.

All methods of commenting are treated equally.

Other ways to comment include this online survey, open until March 15th. Just catching up on this? The city website includes lots of background, including links to previous WSB coverage. The proposal was sparked by a community request more than two years ago – seven years after the city had rejected the idea of a Junction RPZ.

46 Replies to "THURSDAY: Restricted Parking Zone in West Seattle Junction? Tell SDOT what you think"

  • Su February 27, 2019 (10:03 pm)

    Weren’t there donation boxes in those free parking lots? I’ve been donating and suddenly those boxes were gone. I was informed that donate-to-park is not allowed at the moment?

  • Howard February 27, 2019 (10:07 pm)

    Does anyone know how many of the new apartment buildings do not have Off-street parking? Thank you.

    • chemist February 28, 2019 (7:11 am)

      That might be an interesting bit of data to have, where buildings have off-street parking and what they charge per month for it.  It could probably be done collectively through a google maps things or something.  In this instance, it’s for just a daytime RPZ.  I still think SDOT tuned their study towards implementing a daytime RPZ.  One of Tracy’s early videos of an SDOT meeting had explained that for measuring the non-resident parking requirement to create a new zone, they used if the license plate had been observed during any overnight survey time point (instead of looking up the registered address of the car).

  • Mike February 28, 2019 (6:14 am)

    As long as the only eligible people for a free parking permit are single family home tenant/residents.  Anyone living in a multi-family structure should be the only ones forced to pay for parking permits as those are the ones adding cars to the street parking without adequate parking on the land of the structure they live in.  If the city is going to say people don’t drive cars and building places without adequate parking will reinforce people to not have cars, then make people that don’t follow the intent of those units pay a fee for it.  Maybe then people will wake up.  Don’t drive a car and live in a place that does not have adequate parking, no problem…no fee.  Have a car and you live in a place that does not have adequate parking, you pay a fee.

    • CAM February 28, 2019 (12:42 pm)

      By that logic, no one needs parking permits, including single family home owners, because all those people are buying homes that provide adequate off street parking for their collection of vehicles, right?

      • KBear February 28, 2019 (1:34 pm)

        “Have a car and you live in a place that does not have adequate parking, you pay a fee”—EXCEPT for single-family homeowners?? NO. Homeowners are NOT more entitled to park on the street than anyone else.

    • KM February 28, 2019 (5:59 pm)

      Have a car (or cars) that you cannot fit in your driveway or garage because they are too big/filled your garage with too much crap/converted your garage/bought or rented a home without off-street parking?  You pay a fee. Single-family home dwellers are no more entitled to public space and the storage that comes with it than renters or visitors.

    • Mike February 28, 2019 (8:00 pm)

      By the responses I can tell people want free parking and didn’t want to pay to have that parking in the first place.

      • CAM March 2, 2019 (1:02 pm)

        Incorrect. I’ve paid for parking at every apartment I had in Seattle and other major cities. Because I want the convenience and can afford to do so. In the same way that when I bought property here and somewhere before here I made sure there was adequate off street parking for my vehicle. Driving around West Seattle I can tell that many home owners didn’t feel it necessary to do so. This has nothing to do with renters. 

  • JeffK February 28, 2019 (6:26 am)

    Graphic making 101:  make it color-blind friendly.

    • dhg February 28, 2019 (11:11 am)

      JEFFK:  Have you tried the Enchroma glasses?  My dad was colorblind and I am so sorry he did not live to see the day when simple glasses could fix the issue.

      • JeffK February 28, 2019 (12:52 pm)

        I’ve seen videos of those, they are pretty amazing.  I’m not that colorblind, it’s just the 2/4/ext2 hour parking lines on the Proposed RPZ background shading that is difficult for me to see at a glance.

    • seaopgal February 28, 2019 (2:04 pm)

      I’m not colorblind, and I’ve also had troubles with this graphic and distinguishing the blue/purple and orange/red lines.

  • Gorillita February 28, 2019 (7:42 am)

    I just got my first disabled parking placard.  I was given a paper with the “rules.”  It says, ” You can park on the street, for free, in any parking space that is time restricted (including metered parking). ”  The spaces on the RPZ map that are designated for disabled have a proposed four hour limit.  But if I can park in any time restricted space, why have they set a limit?  Wouldn’t I be better off parking in a time restricted two hour parking spot and just staying as long as I need?

    • KBear February 28, 2019 (8:35 am)

      Yes, you can still park in a time-limited non-disabled spot for as long as you want with your disabled placard (up to 72 hours.) Whether you’re better off there depends on how long you need to park and how close it is to your destination.

  • Kim February 28, 2019 (7:57 am)

    Thanks for sharing, the city’s website made it very easy to respond and add comments. I encourage everyone to do that if they care about this issue.

  • not sure February 28, 2019 (7:59 am)

    G: That’s a good question, and I’m not sure.  All I think is that the designated disabled parking might have more space to maneuver–like for a van with a chairlift.  And that’s why someone might want (or  need) one of those spaces–and also explains why those spaces have a time limit.  I’m sure you and others will still be able to use the placard and still just park in any spot that works for you.  That’s my guess at least!

  • Gene February 28, 2019 (8:03 am)

    So basically all the new builds in the shaded areas that have little or no parking associated with them will -with a permit-now have street parking that’s all theirs(after a certain time ) ? What happened to -no parking  spots required because folks moving into these buildings are close to transit & won’t need a car? 

    • chemsit February 28, 2019 (9:04 am)

      Last year Herbold once offered an amendment to the parking reform bill that would have allowed the SEPA studies of parking capacity in the area of new developments in urban villages to have the authority to restrict RPZ access (speaking of it, she said reduce the number of RPZs available per household when 85% of parking capacity was used).  Other blogs characterized it as “deny RPZs to new renters” and helped that amendment get whittled away and then voted down, even as O’Brien and Johnson were both admitting some RPZ zones are so oversubscribed that the RPZ is near-useless.   “The new option would allow SDCI to deny occupants of a new development access to Restricted Parking Zone permits.”

      • HW February 28, 2019 (2:10 pm)

        this sounds like a great idea: ” “The new option would allow SDCI to deny occupants of a new development access to Restricted Parking Zone permits.””

        • chemist February 28, 2019 (9:59 pm)

          Deny as in 0 is rather severe, but I think an eligibility reduction to an average of as little as a per-building average of 0.5 per unit of housing instead of 4 would be appropriate to make sure there’s pressure to use the off-street parking that is built, even if the landlord wants $200/mo for it.  I hope Lisa finds a way to include something like that in any future city/sound transit-enabled Transit Oriented Development projects.  If you want transit oriented height increases or fewer parking spaces, prove it with fewer RPZs.

    • Mike February 28, 2019 (8:09 pm)

      There’s a new place with 40+ units being built by the light rail station in Beacon that is designated to have ZERO parking.  That’ll be interesting for the Red Apple market where people already use it for a park-n-ride even with signs saying you’ll get towed.

  • DM February 28, 2019 (8:47 am)

    I hope it’s shot down again. The whole city’s goal of removing access for out-of-towners who want to visit or continue patronage at their favorite shops is becoming a nagging nightmare. After reading this, it does seem a lot like the whole “we don’t want parking spots for tenant cars, we want density. Ooops! looks like we need parking spots for tenant cars afterall.”I say all of this, knowing that long-time residents in WS have almost no parking options anymore in the Junction anyway, due to the ultra dense apartments the city has been allowing developers to put in. Having worked in the Junction for a number of years, it’s sad that employees don’t have parking. Is this a sign that their gentrified urbanization movement still can’t overcome the weakness of forcing everyone to abandon ownership of a car?

    • Jort February 28, 2019 (10:16 am)

      Just an FYI for you: for many years, the city (and every city in Washington) has been required to plan for a growth in population and housing as part of the state’s Growth Management Act. You said, “The city has been allowing developers” to build apartments. That’s not true. Your neighbors spoke up in the 1990s and said they specifically wanted to concentrate all of West Seattle’s growth in the Junction area, so that the vast majority of single family zoning would remain pristine and untouched.  What this means is that nearly all of the growth in the city is concentrated tightly in very small, very dense areas. On the plus side, the 65%+ single family home zonings in Seattle remain untouched and unchanging. If you don’t like the growth overwhelming a specific area, then you should be advocating for distributed growth throughout the entire city. But “no growth, period” is not an option, by state law. Your neighbors chose to concentrate most of West Seattle’s growth in the Junction. This is what happens when we do that. Don’t blame the “city,” blame your Neighborhood Plan.

    • Karen February 28, 2019 (4:59 pm)

      We aren’t “tenants” we are families who have paid our mortgages for 30 years who can no longer unload groceries close to home because of the commuters who clog our street for 10-12 hours every day.   I’m for the RPZ!And for you who will jump on me for saying that, you can still park for hours to enjoy local businesses, you just can’t store your commuter car here.

      • fedUp March 1, 2019 (9:14 am)

        @Karen   Well said.    Having to walk 2 blocks when it’s pitch black out (because these residential streets don’t have street lights) presents a security concern.   The commuters are the real problem. They don’t want walk a few blocks to a bus stop.  They chose to ride the bus in the city so they take the parking around our houses.   

  • KBear February 28, 2019 (10:01 am)

    If people choose to live in a building (or house) without off-street parking, they should accept the consequences of that choice. Street parking is for everyone. The Fauntleroy RPZ makes sense, because it prevents Vashon residents from storing vehicles in Seattle. But I don’t see why residents who can’t/won’t use their own off-street parking should have priority over people who work, shop, or ride transit in the Junction.

    • FedUp March 1, 2019 (9:06 am)

      @KBEAR   so because someone wants to use my street as a park and Ride, that’s OK.  Since they don’t want to walk 3 blocks to a bus stop?  Come on.  I use my off street parking and my wife needs to park on the street. She has to walk sometimes 3 blocks because it’s so crowded from these commuters and construction workers taking up all the parking around my house    

  • forgotmyname February 28, 2019 (10:40 am)

    This proposal is literally kicking the can down the road –  by pushing
    the problem over a few streets (sorry, 38th/46th Street homeowners!) and
    calling it good.Density is not coming to WS . It’s already here, and it’s not going to go away.  We can’t invest in magical thinking to fix it (“Why, with no spots, everyone will just bike everywhere!”), or rely on the property owners to work against their best interests (Seen how much a spot in a downtown lot costs these days?).So, the City (sigh) is going to have to step in. Until they do so, by building or subsidizing more parking, zoning is just a short-term, half measure. Ideally it would be an RPZ for the folks who live in the neighborhood to park overnight and a parking garage (or garages) for everyone that’s there for commerce (employees, customer, deliveries).

    • ttt February 28, 2019 (8:58 pm)

      Exactly. I live on 46th and we already get tons of all day bus commuter cars parked on our street. we will have no spots left for us after this!!

      • FedUp March 1, 2019 (9:10 am)

        @TTT  so you are concerned about too many cars on your street?  How do you think those that live in the Junction feel?  They have been dealing with it for years.  So you don’t like it because now the RPZ will affect you more?   You know if this is approved it’s very easy for your street to be included? It’s a matter of a 60% approval on a petition from your block. It could literally take few weeks after this RPZ is approved.  You should support this RPZ. 

  • Mabuhay February 28, 2019 (11:23 am)

    Classic example of city departments (planning/land use, transportation, economic development) policies’ at odds. As an Alki resident who tolerates a lot of parking issues, the lack of coordination and consistency pretty appalling. 

  • YouParkYouPay February 28, 2019 (12:07 pm)

    CHEMIST mentions that other Seattle neighborhoods are so ” oversubscribed that the RPZ is near-useless”.   RPZs solve nothing and lead to the untenable uselessness of too many subscribers in busy areas or mostly empty streets as in Fauntleroy.  Neither is equitable.Their is an equitable an successful solution that is not being discussed.Monetization of all parking offers that elusive and fair solution.

    • FedUp March 1, 2019 (9:32 am)

      @youparkyoupay    I already pay to park. I pay property taxes. I pay for the street in front of my house that I can’t park at because you feel everyone needs to be “equitable”.    You have heard “live isn’t fair” right?  Why is your desire to park in front of my house outweigh my need to park close to my house?     RPZs do solve issues. 35 RPZs in the city and none have been “removed”. Apparently they work. 

  • Susan J February 28, 2019 (3:35 pm)

    It is difficult enough trying to park near the Junction to enjoy the restaurants and shops. Don’t make it harder. The junction needs our support so that we don’t buy everything on Amazon.  No RPZ please.

  • Gerecht February 28, 2019 (4:29 pm)

    It seems odd that this would extend south of Alaska on 45th. Those blocks are all single family homes with ample off-street parking. Why do we need to be protecting their parking? 

    • FedUp March 1, 2019 (9:38 am)

      @GERECHT     it appears there is ample off-street parking, but the city did a study and found that over 75% of the cars parking during the day are not residents. They are employees of the businesses around the area, construction workers and the worst offenders…. Commuters that use that street (and the others in the proposed RPZ) as a park and ride so they can catch the bus.    The study the city did was pretty thorough. The details are on the website. 

  • Villager February 28, 2019 (4:56 pm)

    I think a parking garage is needed.  At least until there are decent transit options to get to the Junction.Parking is only going to get worse.And paid parking and RPZ permits only works if there is actually a place to park a car to begin with. 

    • Steven Lorenza March 1, 2019 (8:10 am)

      Good news, there already are garages. For example, you can park and pay today at Jefferson square.

    • FedUp March 1, 2019 (9:24 am)

      @villager   There are quite a few  of those things you reference: “a place to park a car”.   We call em parking lots.  Some are actually free. Some you pay for.     See West Seattle is one of the few place in Seattle where you don’t have to pay. Times are changing folks.  Adapt or move!!!!

  • aa February 28, 2019 (5:05 pm)

    If people choose to live in a building without off street parking they should accept the consequences?  I don’t understand why so many comments are directed at the tenants as if we have so much choice.  Here’s how it goes for me- 1.  can I afford it- yes, 2, go look at it- does it smell like cat pee? No. ok 3.  where is it in proximity to my job? .  Do you know how far down the list off-street parking is?  Don’t blame me as the tenant for the choices made by the builder.I moved to Seattle in 1991 and have lived in WS for about 20 yrs- longer then some. less than many.  I know the WS history of revolt and trying to succeed and create its own city,  From the comments I often read in the WSB, I think many people still think they live in a separate city and continue to be surprised and angry when they feel encroached upon when urban problems find their way over the bridge .  WS will never be the small community it used to be.  I’m sorry about that too.  There are many things I miss about Seattle years ago.  Like walking around Pikes Place Market on a Sunday because it was quiet, Alki in the summer..

    • KBear February 28, 2019 (7:59 pm)

      AA, if off-street parking isn’t a high priority for you, that’s fine—unless it’s because you’re expecting the city to provide an amenity you’re not willing to pay for. If you need a guaranteed place to store your private automobile, PAY for it yourself. The cost of an RPZ permit doesn’t come close to fair market value for a parking spot, so I don’t see why residents ought to have dibs on parking on a public street.

      • aa March 1, 2019 (4:20 am)

        Again, why is this anger being directed at the tenants?   I don’t see anywhere in this process where I have a say, as a tenant living on a street in that zone , in whether or not there are time constraints on parking.  I understand what Karen is saying about not being able to park near her home because commuters have their cars sitting there all day.  I know the upside of that is the cars are parked there because those people took the bus in to work which is a good thing.  And it’s not just commuters leaving WS that clog up the streets, take Buddha Ruska for example.  A very popular restaurant on a residential street . The employees park in front of it and their cars sit there for hours forcing residents and customers to park far away . In my opinion if this area had time limits on parking and permits for residents it would be an improvement.  

      • FedUp March 1, 2019 (9:22 am)

        @KBEAR    so you want those that need to park on the street to pay for private storage?  Are you upset because $32.50 a year it not enough in your opinion? Seriously?       You don’t see why residents should be able to park near their house?   I don’t know…..  we pay property taxes that pay for the street we live on?   Yes, all streets are fair use.  The RPZ doesn’t say you can’t use the street. I says you can’t can’t have free reign on how long you can use the street.      Look, there are 35 RPZs in this city.  They work. There have been no “repeals” of RPZs in the 30+ year history of the program.  And only two neighborhoods that said no to the proposal.      Because you don’t want to walk to the bus stop or use other metro services to get to work, don’t blame the city.   They provide ways and means, Use them!!!!

        • KM March 1, 2019 (6:26 pm)

          We all pay taxes for the street in front of your house. And mine. That’s how taxes work. If you need parking guaranteed close to your house, use your private parking or pay for a garage. 

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