Archive for Sunday, July 16, 2017

Lawrence City Commission to consider parking plan with 30 potential changes

A parking ticket rests under a wiper blade on Massachusetts Street on Monday, March 7, 2011.

A parking ticket rests under a wiper blade on Massachusetts Street on Monday, March 7, 2011.

July 16, 2017

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At their meeting Tuesday, Lawrence city commissioners will consider a parking plan that calls for widespread changes to how the city handles parking in downtown and surrounding neighborhoods.

The 62-page plan covers a dozen neighborhoods in the city’s core and makes 30 recommendations, such as the addition of electronic payments and reservations; a boot and tow policy; residential permits; and increased fines and fees.

In general, city staff said the consultant-led plan lays out a more comprehensive approach to dealing with the city’s parking issues. Brandon McGuire, assistant to the city manager, said a big part of the plan is modernizing the way parking is managed.

“So things like new metering technology that allows somebody to pay with something other than just a nickel, dime or quarter,” McGuire said. “We think that type of a system is going to go a long way to cutting down on the number of tickets that we issue.”

The plan based its recommendations on a study that identified specific parking issues. The plan will guide the city’s development and management of parking operations and facilities over the next 10 years. Once approved, it will be the city’s first long-term parking plan.

McGuire said that one of the overarching concerns identified in the study was the lack of available on-street parking in East Lawrence and the neighborhoods surrounding the University of Kansas. Though the plan recommends a neighborhood parking permit program to address the issue, McGuire said such programs would be limited and up to the individual neighborhoods.

“It would be a minimum number of streets and blocks that would petition and request a permit to be applied to their localized area,” he said.

McGuire said other localized issues include parking in what he called the New Hampshire Street corridor, which is home to several new multistory apartment complexes. He said businesses in that area indicated they are dramatically impacted by the intensity of the development and lack long-term parking for employees and customers. McGuire said an example of a recommendation that could address that issue would be changing five-hour meters to 10-hour meters or adding meter technology that would allow reservations.

The City Commission will decide whether to approve the plan on Tuesday, but approval does not bind the city to enact the recommendations contained in the report. Recommendations that require substantial purchases or changes to city ordinances will require future approval from the City Commission, and McGuire said many will also depend on the context of the budget.

“We would still have to go through the process of developing our own ordinances, and then getting public input on those and having the City Commission adopt them in the future,” McGuire said.

The plan is informed by an analysis of the city’s parking system and resident feedback. The study area encompasses a dozen neighborhoods, including downtown, East Lawrence, Old West Lawrence and the Oread Neighborhood, and feedback from residents, real estate developers, business owners and downtown employees was collected.

The recommendations are broken into two phases, the first of which would be of nominal cost and could be implemented within six months. The recommendations in the second phase are typically more expensive, and timelines for implementation range from one to four years. The full parking plan is available on the city’s website, lawrenceks.org.

The City Commission will convene at 6 p.m. Tuesday at City Hall, 6 E. Sixth St.

Comments

Brett McCabe 5 months ago

Thank goodness that the most important issue pressing against us is being fully addressed. If you put the NIMBY Tigers of East Lawrence, the Oread Neighborhood Assn. and the Whining Herberts of Kasold all together, they can clearly accomplish something vitally important to the future of the city.

The Lawrence City Commission is the only governmental body in the country that can make the Trump administration appear competent.

Tony Peterson 5 months ago

There's been a parking problem in the downtown area for years and it's been getting worse. The City's simply addressing a problem that was already known to exist. This should have been done a decade ago. They kept approving residential development downtown without any plan for where people were supposed to park.

Carol Bowen 5 months ago

Too anti-, Brett. How about supporting the community and its history as a whole.? Lawrence looks good, because of its differences. I've seen a lot of communities grow without caring.

David Holroyd 5 months ago

And Carol I have seen a lot of communites grow with sophistication and pride..Lawrenceis not one of them.

David Holroyd 5 months ago

The full parking plan is on a website but the agreement between Van Trust and the city is no where to be found!

Can you locate the "document" Chad?

Bob Summers 5 months ago

It's all about your money. People in government want it. They will say and do anything to get it.

Richard Quinlan 5 months ago

Noting that the city commission is the reason there are parking problems they should permanently recuse themselves from any parking issues. Allowing major apartment buildings with no parking , allowing house conversions in central Lawrence with no parking , and continuously trying to make money ( actually losing) on parking enforcement in downtown displays the total incompetence of their approach and practices.

Tony Peterson 5 months ago

The blame for most of that lies at the feet of previous City Managers because the codes related to parking were never updated when the codes for downtown development changed to allow residential construction rather than only business or commercial.

David Holroyd 5 months ago

Chad, why isn't the agreement between Van Trust and the city available?

I guess it is in the works after the vote is taken. How can a hearing be held on something that doesn not exist?

As for the Parking...the wonderful Mr. Tom Markus throws the figure around of $130,000 for the auditor but in reality is now going to hire a Director of Parking.

I hope that person has enough pride to manage to keep the lots clean and also those enclosed trash and transformer areas. Lawrence is just plain trashy downtown.

And why doesn't Mr. Markus take a walk once in a while and look at these matters. He doesn't care, he really doesn't.

Ms. Bowen, you want streets fixed? Go to 14th and Ohio and explain to me why the curbing is all along the west side in front of properties owned in conjunction with the owner of Jayhawk Cafe and on top of that the stree on the west side does not have any storm sewer openings so the water will run across the street to the east and in the winter be ICE..my dear. Also the curbing on the east side was poured and then had to be ripped out and the ADA crossing installed.

These are YOUR tax dollars Carol at work , being wasted by a City Manager that is not on top of what the employees are doing and also run by a Mayor that Dares not to Inqure and four other commissioners likewise.

Why is 14th and Ohio more important than 13th street from Mass to Kentucky? Why?

Why does the bar intersection get precedence? The Hawk and the Wheel?

Just asking.

btw,,,Chad could you get one of your top notch photograhers up there and while in the area..take some photos of the water tank being crushed. It is pretty nifty..Channel 6 should be there or whatever the current station is.

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