Committees & DTFs

Parking Expansion DTF

Parking Expansion DTF

Parking Expansion Disappearing Task Force

November 10, 1999
1:00 - 3:00 p.m.  Meeting Notes

Attending: Jill Cordner, Thad Curtz, Wendy Freeman, Doug Hitch, Steve Huntsberry, Linda Kahan, Mark Lacina, Trevor Lytle, Sherry Parsons, Masao Sugiyama, Bill Zaugg, John Carmichael

1. Announcements

Wendy made several announcements:

  • Susan Graham from SCA Engineering will attend the first part of the DTF's November 17 meeting.

  • Michel George may join the November 17 meeting late if another meeting ends early. Michel and Wendy will meet each Friday. Other members of the DTF are welcome to join them.

  • SCA will conduct a study of parking management options. An initial meeting is scheduled for November 23 at 8:00 a.m. Wendy will attend, and other members of the DTF would be welcome.

  • Wendy has been working to identify governing constituencies that the DTF should keep informed. The DTF discussed the Union-Management Committee, which Doug Hitch can keep informed, at its November 8 meeting. Wendy and Michel George can keep the Campus Land Use Committee (CLUC) informed. Wendy will make sure that Conference Services is informed of issues that may affect their operation. Steve Huntsberry noted that the Fire Department should be consulted regarding any new parking lot configurations.

2. Questions for SCA

Wendy said that the SCA report was intended to assist the DTF, but that the options included in the report are not exhaustive and the report's conclusions are not final. None of the options is a "done deal." The DTF discussed possible questions for SCA. Wendy will summarize the committee's questions and submit them to SCA in advance of the November 17 meeting. Possible questions included:

  • SCA rejected several options for reducing demand for on-campus parking as "inefficient," "impractical," or "cost-prohibitive" (p. 10-11). More discussion of these options would be helpful.

  • SCA's report relies on assumptions and rules of thumb. Knowing these assumptions would be helpful to the DTF. Thad will make a list of these items. Did the estimates account for the number of students abroad during Spring quarter? How would changes in the mix of full-time and part-time students affect parking demand? How does the mix of full-size and compact spaces affect capacity?

  • More detail in the cost estimates may be useful.

  • Can the options that reconfigure lots within existing footprints be implemented in phases?

  • Are we required to put landscaping in the middle of the lots? If landscaping is eliminated, how much capacity is gained?

  • How would pervious surfaces affect cost?

  • What are the advantages/disadvantages of angled parking?

  • Are there other options for increasing parking in the northwest corner of campus?

  • Why do the options for B lot show rows running east to west? Wouldn't north-south be better?

  • What is the best reduction in demand we can hope to achieve through demand management strategies?

  • How would adjustments in class scheduling affect demand? [Steve Huntsberry has some information he will share.]

  • What is the bird study in lot B referred to in the report? [Trevor will investigate.]

3. Financial projections

Bill said that the parking operation gets revenue from booth receipts, fines, and the sale of permits, including permits sold through payroll deduction. The main expenses are for staff, the maintenance of lots, and bad debt (unpaid fines).

Bill summarized two financial scenarios. In the first scenario, the college borrows $8 million to construct a parking garage. Even if parking rates are tripled, this scenario leads to some significant deficits. In the second scenario, the college borrows $1.2 million and doubles parking rates. This scenario provides some surpluses in future years. Assumptions made include:

  • The money would be borrowed at six percent over 10 years. (It may be possible to arrange cheaper financing.)

  • After parking rates are increased, demand would drop by 20% and then gradually build up.

  • General expenses would increase by three percent per year.

Thad asked Bill to produce a few more scenarios. For instance, what would be the effect if fees were increased 3 percent per year to match the increase in costs?

4. Community Input

Wendy asked the DTF to brainstorm ways of collecting input from the campus community.

  • Trevor will make reports to his academic program.

  • Jill suggested an article in the CPJ.

  • Wendy would like to put several options on posterboard and display them in high-traffic areas.

  • Thad suggested setting up a Web Crossings discussion area.

  • Thad maintains a subscribable e-mail list that could be used to distribute minutes.

  • Mark can help to involve students living in Housing.

5. Other discussion

  • How many new spaces do we really need?

  • Masao said that he is not yet ready to accept the notion that parking expansion is unavoidable. He would like to look more closely at strategies to reduce demand. Thad said that if SCA's estimates are correct, demand would have to be reduced by approximately 18 or 20 percent to avoid creating new spaces. Wendy suggested that after the DTF meets with SCA, the group may have enough information to begin grappling with this question.

  • How much should parking cost?

  • Sherry noted that the current cost for parking ($75/year) works out to about 30 cents/day, which seems inexpensive. Mark said that even this amount may be a burden for students and staff on very tight budgets. Some kind of sliding scale fee may be appropriate. Doug suggested that every person pay a small amount every day for parking rather than pay for permits in advance. The DTF might consider raising fines rather than (or in addition to) raising fees. Masao said the DTF should not be too quick to abandon the idea that parking fees should pay for the cost of parking. The DTF should think carefully before recommending a plan that would subsidize parking.

6. Next meeting

The group agreed to meet on Wednesday, November 17 from 1:00-3:00 in Library 1507. Susan Graham from SCA Engineering will attend the first 45 minutes.