Palo Alto City CouncilCity of Palo AltoPalo Alto, CA 94301Cc: James Keene
Subject: True Costs of Downtown Parking, Downtown ParkingStructure Management and Linkages to DowntownResidential Parking Problems
Elected Council Members:Diana Diamond’s recent article (Daily News, 05.31.12), about parking in downtown PaloAlto, makes the point that the City is currently spending $1.1 million a year maintainingthese structures--which seems like an awful lot of money. What is the public, or theDowntown Business Community, getting for this expenditure? Has anyone ever auditedthe management of this “project” to understand where all of this money is going? And isthere a linkage between the seemingly high level of expenditures and the high use of Downtown North/South streets by motorists, when the use factors of the parking structuresis not even remotely close to maximum capacity?
Management of Parking Structures
The city has shown such lackadaisical management of the structures so that neither theCity, nor the public, nor the merchants paying for these structures, seem to have theslightest idea how effectively they are being used. The most recent “study” provided bythe Planning Department’s Traffic Division seemed to be more than inadequate, andshowed little evidence of being able to indentify the latent demand for parking in thedowntown area—which is a very necessary variable in this equation.Having walked to the structures myself, and posted the inspection on Youtube-
Walk-Thru of Downtown Parking Structure, Palo Alto (CA):
--How hard would it be to have someone walk these structures, say, once amonth, with a checklist of items to inspect--looking for lights that are out, fireextinguishers that have been stolen, and other deficiencies that need attention, andsupposedly have been paid for by the people purchasing the parking permits?