Parking Management Districts

A managed parking district offers a substantial pool of public or shared parking spaces as a tool for increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of area parking supplies, in support of area access, mobility, and economic vitality.

The pool of spaces can simply be a set of municipally owned and operated facilities, or it can consist of several private facilities that are made available for public parking at set times, or it can be a combination of both. When a parking management district reinvests its parking revenue into the neighborhood, typically street and sidewalk improvements, it may be called a “parking benefit district” The defining characteristic of all parking management districts is that the spaces are strategically managed to:

  • Make them as broadly accessible as possible;

  • Optimize their potential shared-parking efficiencies;

  • Promote their location, availability, and use regulations, particularly to visitors;

  • Provide them to meet “overflow” parking needs among area businesses/destinations with peak parking demand in excess of their on-site supplies;

  • Promote their availability as a means to reduce on-site supply needs for new development; and

  • Facilitate coordinated-management opportunities, including demand-based pricing and revenue-return funding for area improvements.

Difficulty

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Cost

Impact

Key Benefits

  • Provides a macro-scale solution to micro-level parking constraints

  • Provides a viable alternative to on-site parking at new developments in high-growth areas, allowing station areas to grow as highly walkable, bike-friendly transit-adjacent urban centers.

  • Increase the flexibility of parking supplies, to better respond to evolving mobility and parking-demand trends

  • Makes effective use of existing parking supply.

  • Creates coordinated-management and revenue-investment opportunities.

  • Provides opportunities to guide visitors toward best-fit parking opportunities, through coordinated communications, information, wayfinding, and signage.

Case Studies

 NATIONAL 

 REGIONAL 

Parking Districts

Montgomery County, MD

The Montgomery County Department of Transportation’s Division of Parking Management (DPM) maintains the County’s Parking Lot District (PLD) program, through which public parking is maintained and managed in the transit-oriented centers of Bethesda and Silver Spring. This includes all on-street parking and several off-street facilities. In recognition of this connection between balanced mobility and economic/population growth, DPM has increasingly used parking revenue to fund improvements that make these areas more accessible on foot, bike, train, and bus. The majority of funding for this program originally came from a property-value assessment. Since adopting a demand-based pricing approach for its parking assets, the County has been able to retire the annual assessment.

Parking Districts

Fort Worth, TX

Sundance Square is a privately-owned and managed district in Downtown Fort Worth that operates a system of parking facilities, whose infrastructure improvements have been funded in large part by the Downtown Tax Increment Financing (TIF) district.45 The City established a Public Improvement District (PID) for downtown that established a vision for the Sundance Square parking district. One of six investment projects that is noted in the resolution for the PID to be beneficial to the City is an “improvement district transportation and parking planning program.”46 Sundance Square acts as a park-once district, offering coordinated valet throughout the area, comprehensive branding, and consistent signage. Information on parking rates (hourly, daily, and monthly), lot/garage location, and nearby amenities are available on the City’s parking website, fortworthparking.com

Implementation Considerations

Role of Public Sector

  • Explores options for creating a district parking program, to be maintained/administered by the City or a parking authority, a business improvement district, or other 3rd Party, non-profit entity

  • Coordinates with parties who control parking assets not directly controlled by the district administrator

  • Works with a parking operator to provide consistent, specialized, and customer-friendly operations across the district

  • Oversees policy development and implementation to ensure district assets are managed in service to identified goals and objectives

  • Establishes district roles, responsibilities, areas of authority, and funding streams

  • Directs investment of district funds, including revenue sharing as applicable

  • Monitors program implementation and effectiveness

Role of Private Sector

  • Agrees to allow incorporation of their parking assets into a district parking program, to both increase the efficiency of these assets and to contribute to the economy

  • Markets and implements district benefits for development tenants and visitors

  • Collaborates with new developments to facilitate potential shared parking agreements and benefits

Timing

District parking benefits existing TOD properties and stakeholders as well as potential developers who can leverage district benefit to provide less on-site parking.