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Parking Reforms Under Consideration in St. Paul

Two options for significant parking reforms are under consideration in St. Paul. The City Council could decide to eliminate parking requirements entirely as soon as this summer.
May 13, 2021, 7am PDT | James Brasuell | @CasualBrasuell
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Frederick Melo reports on the ongoing efforts to relax parking requirements in the Twin Cities—where both cities have already relaxed parking requirements along transit corridors.

Efforts to reduce parking requirements in Minneapolis in keeping with the vision of the Minneapolis 2040 Comprehensive Plan were documented by Planetizen in April 2021. The cities have a history of working together on planning efforts, most recently when both cities acted simultaneously to lower speed limits.

Melo's article offers more details about the effort to reduce parking requirements in St. Paul. "Senior St. Paul city planner Tony Johnson has been shopping a presentation on a city parking study to neighborhood district councils, and recently presented the same materials to the St. Paul Planning Commission, which will consider how to adjust the zoning rules in the weeks ahead." The St. Paul City Council is likely to consider the parking reform package this summer.

As for the details of the parking reforms under consideration in St. Paul, two options are in play. According to Melo, "the first option recommended by the parking study would reduce minimum parking requirements for developers, and allow for further reductions if they invest in alternatives to vehicular travel, such as subsidizing transit passes."

"The second option would eliminate parking minimums entirely, though it would not prevent developers from building parking if they wish."

In addition to breaking the news about the status of St. Paul's parking reform effort, the article also serves to introduce the concept, providing a recent history of cities that have achieved parking reforms and the math on how much costs to provide off-street parking for developments in St. Paul.

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Published on Monday, May 10, 2021 in Pioneer Press
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