Council hearing and first reading tomorrow, with a vote expected April 20
(April 12, 2022) The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT), in partnership with Lloyd District area businesses and residents, has proposed creating an event district for on-street parking that would help reduce congestion and pollution in the area, and help encourage public transit and biking for people attending large-scale events.
When people attend conventions and pro sports games in the busy neighborhood, it's less expensive for them to drive and park their cars in public, on-street parking spaces than it is to pay the $5 for a round-trip fare on public transit. This creates severe parking shortages, as parking occupancy jumps from about 30 percent normally to more than 90 percent during event days. With nine out of 10 spaces occupied, people drive in circles in the area to find parking, driving while distracted and creating congestion and delays for bus service and local residents and businesses.
On-street parking at the 1,250 spaces in the area is currently free or $1 an hour. The event parking district would allow PBOT to charge $3 an hour during the 90 events a year that draw more than 10,000 visitors, mostly during evening hours.
A first reading and hearing are scheduled for Wednesday, and a second reading and vote on the ordinance is expected April 20. With council approval, the event parking district would take effect in September.
"With the effects of climate change already impacting our community, I am committed to doing all I can to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels," Transportation Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty said. "With smart parking strategies, we can encourage public transit and biking and walking, and make our streets safer for everyone. I am glad that PBOT has already started looking at options for how we can reduce impacts this might have on people living on low incomes in the Lloyd area."
Event parking districts using higher meter rates and extended hours of enforcement have been successful in managing parking impacts to event areas in other cities and in Southwest Portland near Providence Park Stadium.
The proposal implements several policies passed by the city council over many years. In 2018, council passed an ordinance for the Performance Based Parking Management Manual, which outlines how and where to establish Event Parking Districts. It is consistent with the report and recommendations by the Pricing Options for Equitable Mobility Task Force, which were accepted by council last year.
The Portland Bureau of Transportation (PBOT) is the steward of the city’s transportation system and a community partner in shaping a livable city. We plan, build, manage, and maintain an effective and safe transportation system that provides access and mobility. Learn more at portland.gov/transportation