Parking master plan to be considered by Metro Board

(pdf here)

One of the tougher issues Metro has to deal with involves parking at transit stations. It takes money to build, maintain and operate parking. The agency has also been working to ensure that parking remains available for patrons actually taking transit.

The Metro Board this month received the above Metro update on “The Supportive Transit Parking Program Master Plan.” The Board is scheduled to consider the master plan in January.

For those who use the system, what this really means: Metro will continue to implement daily and monthly parking pricing at stations to better manage supply and demand of parking. Over the last year, the agency has started charging parking pricing at 11 of the agency’s 59 stations as part of a test program. Four more stations will soon have pricing: Norwalk, Lakewood, and Crenshaw and Aviation stations.

As for future pricing, the master plan recommends charging for parking at any station with 70 percent or more occupancy.

Thus far, Metro has found that pricing seems to be working — there are more spots open throughout the day at the 11 stations that charge for parking. Payment can be made through pay machines or through a smartphone app. The system requires proof of transit use via a TAP card and that helps keep people not taking transit from parking at a Metro facility.

Related: The Metro Board on Thursday is considering the acquisition from Caltrans of two transit parking lots at stations on the Green Line: Lakewood and Norwalk. The purpose is to better manage the lots for Metro customers. Here’s the staff report.

Categories: Transportation News

14 replies

  1. Since a TAP card is required anyway, wouldn’t it be simpler if parking could be paid with a TAP card?

    • Good point. There are some changes in the works involving TAP cards that may let them be used for paying for other things beside transit in the future. Stay tuned.

      Steve Hymon
      Editor, The Source

  2. The practice of Metro of charging for parking at nights and weekends, while not providing the same level of security during the day (i.e. the guards and monitors paid for by the project don’t work at night) has got to go. It is hurting weekend and night ridership. I have no issues paying a fee if I am helping to fund more security, but with night and weekend service poor at many outlying stations it’s easier for me to walk the extra four minutes outside the station from street parking at a station like El Monte or Azusa, most of which only restrict parking during the day.

    • Hi Aaron;

      The parking staff says no negative impact to ridership compared with last year before fees were implemented. There was a slight increase on Red Line ridership, which may be due in part to more riders being able to find parking throughout the day.

      Steve Hymon
      Editor, The Source

  3. Are you guys even enforcing parking at North Hollywood Station. Ive seen multiple times people just park and walk across the street to go somewhere else. It makes me think if me paying is even worth it or if its even being checked. And if the machines are just for show.

  4. “As for future pricing, the master plan recommends charging for parking at any station with 70 percent or more occupancy. ”

    At most structures along the Gold Line, BEFORE Metro started charging for parking, the lots were 95% empty on weekends. There is no reason for Metro to charge for parking along the Gold Line on weekends! When the parking structures were filled, it was only due to big events like games and concerts at the Rose Bow, Rose Parade, etc. I could accept Metro charging for big events on weekends.

    I would also guess that on holidays the parking structures are 90% empty at most lots! Hell, the city of LA doesn’t charge for meter parking on holidays! Yet, Metro will charge on holidays like Memorial, Labor, Thanksgiving, etc when the lots are 90% empty???

    It just proves that this is all just a money grab by Metro!

    • All stations should have free parking on weekends and holidays. For the most part, traffic is not as bad then and you can go longer distances much faster by car than metro. Give a reason to take the train!

      By comparison, you can typically park all weekend at BART stations that have garages.

  5. Is the Board considering selling the properties, requiring the developer to provide some on-site parking for Metro customers and then using the cash for other projects?

    • There is a joint development proposed at North Hollywood and parking would be provided for Metro riders. There has also been an unsolicited proposal received for a joint development at El Monte Station although that one is in the very early stages.

      Steve Hymon
      Editor, The Source

  6. Metro should charge parking fees only during the business day (say, from 6AM to 8PM), on business days (not weekends or holidays).

    Wardlow is a station with a terrible parking situation. Every day, the two small lots fill up, and the surrounding neighborhoods fill with cars – a terrible impact to that neighborhood. And yet most or all of the paid spots sit unused, because to use them, you have to buy a monthly pass.

    Also, we need more bike lockers! I would bike to Metro every single day if I had a bike locker. Unfortunately, all the lockers are rented out, and will be until who-knows-when.