The City of Jacksonville is undergoing a systematic study of parking issues and solutions in some of the older, historic neighborhoods of Jacksonville. These include include San Marco, Riverside, Avondale and Springfield. COJ has retained TimHaahs to complete the study, including the gathering of public input, which is the purpose of tonight's meeting. SPAR supported the meeting by advertising the opportunity widely, encouraging participation and having both staff and board members attend.
Comments by Presenters
> The study was initiated after city and elected representatives communicated that parking complaints were a chronic issue in these neighborhoods.
> TimHaahs is a national firm that specializes in parking issues, and recently completed a similar parking study in a Richmond, VA historic district.
> Parking is a shared commodity, conflicts will exist, have to be managed.
> Quality of life and economic development are two keys to keep in mind while thinking about the subject.
> When deciding on parking policies for a community, need mass buy in. Not 50% +1
> Angled parking on Main Street is a possibility. Would increase parking capacity and calm traffic.
> Issues regarding alleys and their maintenance/ownership are not unique to Springfield or Jacksonville – it’s a nationwide issue. Many cities have the same alley policies as Jacksonville. Alleys are only of interest to this study if they allow access to additional inventory of parking.
> If residential parking permits were pursued, it would not be usual for a specific number of parking permits to be given to each household, with a number given for visitors as well. Permits may be needed only between certain hours of day. Tags could also be used instead of actual permits. Public input would shape the details.
> The current trend nationally is to have no parking requirements for new homes or businesses. Encourages mass transit, car share, bike share.
> Adding significant parking along Main Street may be challenging. Different locations along Main Street may be popular at the moment, but those may change, thus the demand for parking along Main Street. The city purchasing vacant lots along or near Main Street and reserving them for parking could hypothetically be a solution, as would memorandum of understandings with businesses that are closed during part of the day/night which have unused parking lots.
> Marking/painting parking spots along residential streets is not a good idea. Data shows3 that it leaves less rooms for cars to park, and doesn’t factor in vehicles of different sizes.
> Description of the process: All input from the different neighborhoods will be gathered, suggestions will be made to the city, the city will give their input to TimHaahs, revised recommendations will be given to the city, the city will review to see which they will implement. Each set of recommendations will be unique to that neighborhood. Drafts of the recommendations will be published for public input. The study and recommendations will look years into the future, and recommendations could be phased in in the future years. Step 1 of the process should be completed in about two months.
Comments by Residents
> Different land uses within the residential neighborhood can cause parking conflicts.
> The parking policy related to 24 time period needs to be changed.
> Alleys are important to access parking in the rear of homes but aren’t maintained by the city.
> Speed limits need to be addressed.
> Better enforcement of current parking policies appears to be needed.
> Parking on vacant lots and CROW’s are an issue.
> Unfair practices around neighbors having No Parking signage installed needs to be addressed.
> Differences between alleys and shared driveways need to be clarified.
> Questions around ownership of the alleys. Many neighbors have spent a lot of money to maintain alleys which they don’t own.
> City ordinances allow some types of businesses more flexibility with parking requirements than others.
> Jacksonville, nor Springfield, has the infrastructure to utilize mass transit as an efficient way to travel.
> Historic homes often don’t have room for driveways and have 25’ property spans, leaving on street parking as the only parking option.
> More parking on Main Street is needed.
> 4 way stops are needed.
Kevin O’ Halloran, SPAR Admin, conveyed to TimHaahs that JTA and FDOT are currently working on plans that may add additional angled parking along Main Street, and legislation related to Context Sensitive Streets -which may impact parking along Main Street and residential roads- is being reviewed by City Council committees now. Coordinating between these will be necessary moving forward.
TimHaahs welcomes any additional concerns or comments be emailed to [email protected]
Springfield residents, business owners and stakeholders are also encouraged to send any additional comments to SPAR, here.
About 50 people attended the meeting.