RPZ

Talk About Parking Spaces

Much of Squire Park is included in a Restricted Parking Zone (RPZ 2 or RPZ 7).  Much of the rest of Squire Park where the streets are not controlled by an RPZ is affected by commuters’ cars. It’s an issue in the neighborhood as most readers of this newsletter know.

The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) is reviewing RPZ policy and wants community input.

The Restricted Parking Zone program has existed in Seattle since 1979, primarily to discourage commuter parking from major institutions (hospitals and universities) in residential areas.  Since the last review of RPZ policy in 2009, the city has experienced significant population growth and neighborhood development.  The RPZ program is not designed to manage demand for parking by residents--- only to limit parking by non-residents.

The policy review going on now includes a consideration of whether or not there should be policies and strategies for managing residential parking demand.  This could be a significant change.

See, http://www.seattle.gov/transportation/parking/parkingrpz.htm

A representative of SDOT will be at the April 9 SPCC meeting to describe the review project and hear your opinions.  To contact responsible SDOT persons by e-mail, write to RPZPOLICYREVIEW@Seattle.gov

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Swedish Cherry Hill Transportation Ambassador

Swedish Medical Center Cherry Hill would like to introduce the new Campus Transportation Ambassador, Aron Garavaglia to the Squire Park Community. The main purpose of the new position is to help anyone in the community (residents and non-residents) with any parking/commuting questions and challenges that arise. Aron will be spending a lot of time observing traffic and parking patterns in the residential streets surrounding Swedish Cherry Hill. Soon the program will have a dedicated helpline, which anyone can call at any time to have their issues addressed. Swedish is in the process of obtaining an electric vehicle, which Aron will use to patrol the streets and eventually enforce a campus wide parking policy. Aron is excited to be a part of the "Good Neighbor" mentality[sic] and looks forward to being an integral part of the community. Aron can be reached at 206-491-9657 or agaravaglia@rpnw.com. Look for information regarding the Transpiration Ambassador Helpline in the near future.

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Is There A Way To Reduce Commuter Traffic To Our Neighborhood?

On January 10, hear a presentation from a Seattle Department of Transportation representative regarding the Residential Parking Zone (RPZ) surrounding the Swedish/Sabey campus.  RPZ #2 limits on-street parking during the day to two hours.  Affected streets include parts of north-south streets from 15th Avenue to 21st Avenue, and parts of east west streets from Fir Street to Spring Street. For a map and details on the RPZ, see http://www.seattle.gov/transportation/parking/rpz_z2.htm

The intent of the RPZ is to discourage commuters to the Swedish/Sabey campus from parking on neighborhood streets.  City policy is to discourage single occupancy vehicle (SOV) commuting to all institutions, including Swedish/Sabey.  One of the ways this is done is to limit the amount of garage parking that can be provided, and to require minimum parking rates.  However, since Squire Park has a supply, free on-street parking may be an alternative choice for some commuters.  The expectation of the City is that, by limiting parking to two hours, those who might otherwise take advantage of free on-street parking are discouraged from doing so.

The question neighbors are asking is whether or not the current policies of RPZ 2 are effective. Many neighbors see apparent Swedish/Sabey commuters parking and later, in two hours or so, returning to "rub the chalk off" their tires, or to move their cars.  Others, just outside the boundaries of Zone 2, feel that the effect of the RPZ is to increase the number of commuters driving to and parking on their residential streets.

Is it possible that the current parking time limit --- two hours from morning to afternoon ---could be changed?  Is expanding the boundaries of Zone 2 appropriate or possible?  What other questions do you have about the policies of the RPZ program? Come to the January meeting to talk about that.

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