May 3, 2012

Bicycle Advocates should support the abolishment of minimum parking requirements

Did you know that any new 1, 2, or 3 dwelling units required 2 parking spaces per dwelling? That 4+ dwelling units required 1.5 spaces per dwelling. Finally, retirement homes require 0.75 space per unit. The only ways to get out of these requirements is to be in a "special parking area" or to be involved in a rezoning.

Did you know that a restaurant that is less than 5,000 sq. ft.must have a parking space for every 75 sq. feet of the building? That means a 4,000 sq. feet restaurant would need to provide 53 parking spaces. With a standard parking space being 18 feet by 9 feet, that new 4,000 sq. feet restaurant would need to provide a minimum of 8500 sq. feet of parking.

This is a way of showing that lower density is the norm in Columbus Municipal Code. For bike or transit advocates, lower density does not promote increase mode share in biking or busing and zoning is something that is easily overlooked in city planning.

Bicycle advocates, please join me in advocating for the termination of minimum parking requirements. Most developers will know that most people use cars but if they decide that 8500 sq. feet of parking is unnecessary, why should they be required to jump through hoops? Lift minimum parking requirements!

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