In 2013, City Council approved the Core Commitment which outlines a long-term vision for downtown with a series of recommended actions. One of these is to “explore partnerships with the private sector with respect to making public parking available as part of redevelopments (page 18).” The approach has potential benefits, including gradually adding parking spaces to the inventory over time, and providing parking dispersed throughout the downtown,meeting the demand for conveniently located parking.
Recent discussions with a downtown landowner have opened the door to a possible partnership. A prudent approach requires that the City explore the costs, benefits and potential risks associated with such a joint venture. As such, I brought to the March 30 Development & Infrastructure Committee meeting a staff direction to:
“Direct the General Manager of Development & Infrastructure to complete a preliminary evaluation of the feasibility of partnering with a private developer to construct public underground parking in a proposed downtown development. Staff to report back to Council with a financial assessment including the costs per space, impact on the current parking reserve fund and the impact on future parking supply, as well as the legal considerations of any partnership including operating, maintenance and liability .”
Update: This staff direction was approved by committee, and will go to council April 20.