Last week, WW wrote about pushback against a City Hall plan to expand a publicly owned parking lot in Old Town ("Space Exploration," WW, May 29, 2019). Critics say spending public dollars on increased car parking is bad policy and would undercut the city's work to reduce carbon emissions. "It's pretty simple: Every parking space we build is another car that drives into the middle of this city," says Michael Andersen of the Sightline Institute, a Northwest sustainability think tank. Here's what readers think.
Eugene Harris, via Twitter: "People driving into downtown creates commerce and jobs."
Mike Gooding, via Twitter: "Be realistic. People drive into the city. You eliminate parking, people stop coming. I rarely go to Saturday Market now due to parking. Just not worth the hassle."
Damon, via wweek.com: "I'm in favor of making it more expensive to drive. That way, maybe some of these terrible drivers on the roads will have to take the bus."
Tim Bovee, via Facebook: "Waste of money, building more parking. In the next three years driverless Teslas will take over the roads, taking people anywhere in the city for less than the price of running the family gas-guzzler. And all of those robot Teslas won't need to park downtown."
DanInAloha, via wweek.com: "The solution is improved public transit!"
Jessie Smith, via Facebook: "If people can't get there, they can't spend money there. How about we focus on improving the emissions our vehicles put out, instead of denying the fact that people drive."
Brian Cregeen, via Facebook: "People that don't live in the Portland metro area but work there and/or want to do things in Portland have no option for public transportation. To reduce parking we need to focus on a statewide public transportation system."
Mh, via wweek.com: "If you build it, they will come. If you don't, they'll eventually have to start thinking about alternatives."
Finikki, via wweek.com: "I can't see the need to maintain the current level of parking going away until house prices are more affordable; it seems like an obvious direct correlation. Right now, many people working in Portland have to drive in because rent and house costs force them to live outside the city proper."
Anthony-Anton Long, via Facebook: "Most tourists don't pedal in to visit Portland from out of state. Maybe they could all e-scooter in on the freeways."
Jessica Evert, via Facebook: "Portland is going to turn into New York where everyone is forced to take public transportation."
Adam Hart, via Facebook: "Not everyone is a barista, has a handlebar mustache and rides a vegan bicycle!"