[Vision2020] Parking

Bill London london at moscow.com
Tue Sep 12 16:22:37 PDT 2006

Perhaps one reason the downtown parking issue has no citizen champions is
that the issue seems so complex and so hopeless.
After years of discussion, the issue seems no closer to consensus than
And then NSA plopped into the midst, with about 150 students and staff.  I
do think the City Council forged a decent compromise, allowing NSA to stay
downtown but requiring the school (which pays NO property tax to support
parking lots etc) to get their own 42 car parking lot.
And where will the NSA find a space near downtown for 42 cars?  Will NSA
find that space or will they refuse and force a conflict with the council?

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Nils Peterson" <nils_peterson at wsu.edu>
To: <vision2020 at moscow.com>; <pkraut at moscow.com>
Sent: Tuesday, September 12, 2006 12:44 PM
Subject: Re: [Vision2020] Parking

> Pat, I attempted a comment on this parking problem topic a couple months
> ago, also as a letter to the editor, which was apparently sufficiently
> inarticulate that it didn't generate any discussion. Thanks for attempting
> to re-start the conversation.
> The summary of my point was that no constituency has decided to take on
> solving this problem. There are some willing to say there is a problem,
> there seem to be none taking the proactive position of proposing a
> and building a constituency to lobby for adopting the solution. Similarly,
> no one has built a coalition big enough (loud enough) to persuade the
> council it needs to lead. One hypothesis to draw from this non-action is
> that the problem isn't serious for enough people.
> Another conversation I've tried to start is that downtown parking is a
> "tragedy of the commons" situation. All activities downtown benefit from
> existence of the parking and all need to have a stake in its management or
> expansion. An example of this is the problem the COOP perceives it has (as
> demonstrated by its newsletter and parking lot signage) that people use
> parking and then go to other destinations. The COOP might suspect that,
> it to add another parking space, that space would not be to its sole
> benefit, but would be shared by other downtown users.
> So, I think the Council's recent action of requiring one member of the
> commons to expand the resources within the commons is problematic. The
> extenuating circumstance that the Council might argue is the CUP
> that the NSA use is somehow not part of the normal downtown.
> We are going to see another version of this discussion later this month
> (18th?) when the Council hears a rezone request for the two white grain
> elevators at the south end of downtown. The request is to change from
> industrial to central business district. That is, to join to the parking
> commons, and, by definition of the CBD zone, not be required to create
> on-site parking.
> My reaction to this is that expansion of the CBD should be decided on the
> merits of having more CBD -- and recognizing that more parcels in the
> district makes a larger pool of players in the coalition to fix the
> problem.
> The counter argument will say that parking is a problem and adding more
> users to the community will further overtax the commons. In fact, I have
> looked along south main and the parking beside one of the elevators
> (opposite Gritman) is used, and occasionally at least, full. The elevator
> not generating those cars (its shut), so its share of the parking commons
> being used by other businesses. That is, the elevator's restraint is to
> benefit of others.
> What would I like to see?
> An effort to advance a positive solution and to build a coalition around
> that solution.
> On 9/12/06 11:07 AM, "vision2020-request at moscow.com"
> <vision2020-request at moscow.com> wrote:
> > Date: Tue, 12 Sep 2006 10:14:54 -0700
> > From: "Pat Kraut" <pkraut at moscow.com>
> > Subject: [Vision2020] Parking
> > To: "vision2020" <vision2020 at moscow.com>
> > Message-ID: <001501c6d68f$0172b580$65acfea9 at d5b8c8>
> > Content-Type: text/plain; charset="iso-8859-1"
> >
> > I wanted to submit this letter to the paper but it is too long so I have
> > edited it but will post the whole thing on this site for your enjoyment.
> >
> > Editor:
> >
> > I disagree that the city council did a good thing in postponing the
> > about the possible parking problem downtown.
> > The council was shown a photo of the Jackson Street lot and Mr. Lambert
> > there were empty spots available a fact that seemed to get lost
somewhere as
> > the evening went on. No one asked just how many spaces are in the lot
and if
> > NSA has 200 or 150 students and they all want to park will it fill that
> > Am I to assume that the council already knows the answer to the
> > Does anyone on the council know the answer to that question? How many
> > on main or any other street in the area are there and who fills them?
> > people eating? Visiting the doctor?  How long do they stay at the gym?
> > other businesses downtown ask their employees their parking habits?
> > t we actually do some sort of survey and find out if there really is a
> > problem?
> >  The council was informed that there are problems with zones putting a
> > parking lot in any other area of town except the central business zone
> > is making NSA find more spots anyway. It would be fair to ask NSA to
find 42
> > more spots in town if anyone could be sure that there actually is a
> > problem. I would be more convinced that there is a problem with some
> > finding what they believe is convenient parking. Maybe what we need is
> > handicapped parking for those who have trouble walking any distance and
> > exercise program for the others. How long has it been since the city
> > actually did any type of questioning of those parking downtown because
> > businesses say there is a problem does not make is truth. I remember the
> > restaurant in the hotel and I can assure it wasn't parking that made my
> > friends and I stop eating there. It was one very bad meal with lousy
> > service. Moscow is a small town and the word gets out quickly. Most of
> > friends and I have lived in Moscow a long time and know how to find
> > to any location so I do not believe it was parking that closed that
> > restaurant.
> > Once again a city council has simply left the real decision for another
> > and another council.
> > Pat Kraut
> =======================================================
>  List services made available by First Step Internet,
>  serving the communities of the Palouse since 1994.
>                http://www.fsr.net
>           mailto:Vision2020 at moscow.com
> =======================================================

More information about the Vision2020 mailing list