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City proposals: Broadway paid night parking, end of Cal Anderson free parking

Don’t shoot the messenger. The Seattle Department of Transportation has released a draft plan for parking changes for the Broadway area of Capitol Hill. Some of the proposals will not be popular (with me!). Proposals include:

  • Extended paid parking hours past 6 PM on Broadway between John and Roy
  • Replacing free 3-hour parking along Cal Anderson Park with paid 4-hour parking
  • A stick in your eye

Kidding. No sticks. Not all of the proposals will make you sad — one proposal that could be cool is the addition of parking on both sides of the street on Mercer, Republican, Harrison and Thomas west of Broadway. More on that and the rest of the draft plan below. And, thinking of the greater good, better managed parking can be really healthy for local businesses and encourage better decisions for the environment by drivers. But, yeah, paying to park after 6 PM on Broadway is going to suck. And, don’t even talk to me about the Cal Anderson change — I consider that stretch official CHS motorpool parking when I’m chasing breaking news.

Here’s the proposal map and details from SDOT:

Download PDF

SDOT Broadway parking proposals

  • Increase residential parking availability by adding paid parking with restricted parking zone (RPZ) signs to
  • mixed-use blocks just north of E Pine St (valid RPZ permit holders would be exempt from paid parking rates)
  • Improve predictability for customers and visitors by converting 1-hour time limits to more standard 2-hour
  • time limits
  • Alleviate congested parking conditions at Cal Anderson Park and expand park access by changing 3-hour
  • time limit spaces to 4-hour paid parking on 11th Ave directly adjacent to the park
  • Create consistency and increased parking opportunities for residents east of Broadway by installing
  • Zone 4 RPZ signs where there are currently gaps
  • Increase parking availability and calm traffic by adding unrestricted parking on the north sides of streets
  • where it can be done safely. All eligible blocks are shown in purple—which ones work best for you?
  • Create more customer parking for restaurants and businesses by extending paid parking hours on Broadway after 6pm

SDOT is collecting feedback on the plan here through November 23. 

We wrote about the planning process and told you about some of this early planning here, by the way.

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20 thoughts on “City proposals: Broadway paid night parking, end of Cal Anderson free parking” -- All CHS Comments are held for moderation before publishing

  1. The new purple sections are interesting. I actually got towed once when I parked overnight accidentally there on Republican. This would definitely open up a lot of parking spaces in an area that desperately needs them, but those streets would be seriously cramped with two sides taken by parking. It would effectively make those one lane roads.

  2. These roads would become one lane. Are they planning on making them one way (not the worst idea in the world)? Considering parking is around 100% capacity at night,you’d never have enough room for two cars to make it through.

    What about turning some streets (in the purple area west of broadway and north of Olive) into residential parking with permit only? Alot of people live there and it’s effectively become the place to park when going out on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

  3. Seattle has the most complicated parking system of all time! At this point every street is going to have a different rule. It’s getting to be like the tax code. Remember parking meters?

  4. Reducing some of the neighborhood roads to one-lane should be OK. It will slow traffic down through there (hopefully!).

  5. As a zone 4 permit holder, I only get one guest permit. I guess if you live in this area (I live across the street from Cal Anderson park)people that visit me who don’t get the one guest permit are screwed if they’re going to visit for more than 4 hours. I think this is way too limiting.

  6. Permit parking is barely enforceable. And most people abuse the guest permit to park another car. I’m not sure it would help.

  7. I’ve been thinking about this, and I’m kinda leaning towards liking the extended metering hours on Broadway. Parking spots are rare and valuable, why shouldn’t the city charge to use ’em? If it gently nudges people to walk or bike a little more often, and puts a little more money in the city to fix roads, pay for buses, etc, I think that’s OK.

    Heaven knows I walk and bike more and more because (a) parking is annoying and (b) it’s good for me and (c) good for the planet.

  8. Extending the parking is a bad idea. Has anyone ever noticed how much business suddenly comes to Broadway RIGHT after 6pm when the parking stops costing? And have you noticed that there’s always plenty of parking while it still costs to park. It’s self-evident, people don’t want to pay to park and they wait till it won’t cost them. People with cars have other options and they’ll just choose to drive to where it won’t cost them. Activities like using the gym at Broadway Mkt, popping in for a quick bite at one of the Broadway eateries, etc. It will definitely impact a lot of business. People will think twice before heading to Broadway for whatever. It’s all well and good to say “people will walk or bike more” but they won’t. That only works for people who live close enough to walk anyway, and that number of people can’t keep Broadway afloat. It’s cold and rainy and it’s just not gonna happen. This is a stupid idea and the Broadway businesses will suffer in the evenings.

  9. Was wondering if the parking folks at sdot read Shoupe. They could probably afford a lot less variety in rules if they just charged the right amount. For instance, charge the right amount and they can do away with time limitations. If someone really wants to pay the going rate to park all night…let ’em.

  10. This is a really bad idea. We have too many cars
    in this neighborhood already. Bringing MORE cars
    in is just crazy. It will cut sightlines for
    pedestrians (and drivers) create a very dangerous
    situation for cyclists, of which there are many
    in this neighborhood, all to encourage more people
    to drive. BAD IDEA.

  11. True – you have a point as far as when this would be in place.

    I will add that parking isn’t enforced in this area as it stands now. There has been an SUV parked on 11th and Denny for over 2 weeks and not even a ticket. The tires are marked but the car is still there unticketed. It seems like before the city enforces new parking restrictions, they should enforce the restrictions/laws already in place.

  12. SS:

    11th and Denny is not the same micro-hood that they’re talking about here. I can tell you for sure that parking IS enforced around Summit and Olive, north and west of Broadway. I see parking police around here all the time; recently I’ve started seeing tow trucks as a regular occurrence on weekend nights.


  13. Parking on both sides of these east west streets would create a real traffic hazzard, especially in those blocks with condo parking garage driveways. This would make it almost impossible to exit onto the street. Making them one way would not help either. With winter driving conditions cars slidding down hills will have cars on both sides to run into. The only way to slow down traffic is with traffic circles, a much better option. We need to get people out of cars.

  14. It seems a bit absurd that at a time when Broadway businesses are suffering dramatically due to the disruption of the Sound Transit construction that the city would further impact businesses (especially restaurants)by making it more expensive and harder for customers to park on Broadway for dinner, drinks, etc. If the City seriously thinks this is beneficial, they should bring it back to the community after the Sound Transit disruption has ended.

  15. It’s slighly counter intuitive, but charging for parking actually HELPS make parking more available. It’s guaranteed parking availibility for a fee or uncertain, sketchy parking availibity for free. I choose the first option for this reason, not to mention the benefits of the added cashflow.

  16. Kind of agree with archie. Before I moved to Cap Hill, I would get to the area around 5:30pm and pay for a spot which was then mine the rest of the evening. If they allow longer than 2 hour parking for a reasonable rate, I would have been happy to pay it if it meant a much higher chance of landing a spot.

    Of course, now I walk to most places which makes my opinion somewhat moot.