For the last 7 years, the NW Parking Stakeholder Advisory Committee (SAC) has been trying to manage 5,264 of the most desired parking spots in the city for the greatest good. But, despite their efforts, 7,600 permits were sold in 2018 for those 5,264 spaces, a 614 permit increase over 2017.
The permit program is still one of the most advanced in the nation. The permits, while still 1/10 the cost of off-street parking, are sold for $180 a year. Progressive pricing of permits (the second, per driver, costs more than the first) keeps Jay Leno from parking 100s of cars on the street. Revenue from the permit surcharge funds the innovative Transportation Wallet program, bike parking, and more.
Prices might go up, a little bit
The NW Parking SAC decided against increasing the surcharge for permits (the base charge in 2018 was $60 + $120 surcharge) but the city has upped the base fee to $75. It’s unclear if permit rates will go up $15 to $195/year to cover the increase.
In contrast, the Central Eastside Industrial District has raised permit fees every year and Zone G residential permits are now $370 per year. Committing to a schedule for several years of performance-based increases would be a good next step for the NW Parking SAC.
Accounting for off-street parking
One of two proposed changes for 2019-2020 is that buildings/households with available off-street parking will lose permit availability proportional to that off-street supply. In an example given by PBOT, if a household has two vehicles registered and one off-street parking space, then the household can purchase only one permit.
Restricting business permits
Another proposed change is to limit the amount of permits available to businesses. There are 6 employers in NW Portland with more than 50 permits allocated to their employees. The proposed changes would limit the allowable permits to any business to 50. PBOT is considering making more subsidized transportation wallets available to employers to mitigate the impact of this change.
Expanded Transportation Wallets
One change that is already here is an expanded Transportation Wallet for 2019. The wallet now includes:
- $150 in TriMet credit
- An annual BIKETOWN membership
- An annual Portland Streetcar pass
- $25 in Car2Go credit.
All for just $99 dollars! This is a great program, the city should expand subsidies so that low-income residents who do not purchase permits get Transportation Wallets for free.
Let PBOT know you support good parking policy!
The NW Parking SAC is taking a thoughtful approach to parking management since they cannot require structured parking in new buildings. Take a minute to explore the on-line open house. Fill out their survey.
If you are a NW resident or worker, try to show up at the Open House on May 7th from 5pm – 7pm at the Eleanor Event Space (1605 NW Everett St) and share your input on permit changes coming to Zone M this September!