An update on parking proposals, part II 5

Last week, OP noted that we are revising our proposed parking requirements; a reexamination based on the comments we received as part of our extensive public process, and a reevaluation of how new parking standards could and should be implemented. Many people have commented on this, and a few people have contacted us to get more information on this new draft text.

Well, we are still working on the actual text, but below is a summary of what we are working on. Some of the provisions are different; some will look familiar because we are not proposing to change them. Of course, this is a work in progress; aspects may change by the time the draft text is complete but we wanted you to know where we are headed.

Summary of current proposal:

Eliminate separate transit zone text. This means that, unlike in earlier proposals, all parking regulations would be adopted as a comprehensive part of this ZRR process, not requiring additional, subsequent processes to map and implement separate transit zones.

• For any use, allow 50% by-right reduction in required parking for sites located close to transit (1/2 mile from a metro station, or ¼ mile from a streetcar line or WMATA bus route identified as part of the Priority Corridor Network).

Low density residential zones: retain existing one space per lot requirement; except no on-site parking would be required where there is no alley access.
   o Strong neighborhood concern about total elimination of requirement; likely to have minimal impact as providing on-site parking is standard practice.
   o Addresses properties that cannot access parking from an improved alley; new curb cuts eliminate street parking (no net gain), negatively impacts streetscape character, can result in loss of street trees, and can create safety issues.

Multi-family residential: standardize minimum parking requirement of 1 / 3 units greater than 4 units, and

Wheels Where You Want Them Reply

The Office of Planning is proposing changes to the bicycle parking requirements as part of the Zoning Regulations Review. We realize that bicycles are increasingly the transportation mode of choice for many of the District’s residents. One of our goals with the updated code is to make bicycle parking as convenient for cyclists as possible. Currently (and rather bizarrely), the number of bicycle parking spaces is linked to the number of car parking spaces. Instead, we’re proposing to tie bicycling parking requirements to either a project’s square footage or its number of dwelling units.

bike parking 5

In addition to the proposed change regarding how to determine the required number of bicycle parking spaces, the Office of Planning is proposing some additional revisions to the Zoning Code when it comes to bikes. We recognize that different users will have different needs and have proposed requirements for both short- and long-term bicycle parking. We know it’s frustrating when you have to lock your bike to a sign post because you can’t find a conveniently located bike rack. We want to make sure that short term bike parking spaces are available to serve shoppers, visitors and individuals making deliveries.

bike parking2

Short term spaces must be:
•  Located in a convenient, well-lit location that can be viewed from the building the spaces are intended to serve;
•  Available for shoppers, customers, commuters, messengers, and all other visitors to the site;
•  On the same lot as the use they are intended to serve or on public space within 20 ft. of the lot;
•  Within 50 ft. of a primary entrance to the building they serve;
•  Surfaced and maintained with an all-weather surface;
•  Located with an aisle at least 5 ft. wide between the rows of bicycle parking spaces; and
•  Provided as bicycle racks that meet the following standards:
      •   The bicycle frame and one wheel can be locked to the rack with a high security       U-shaped shackle lock if neither wheel is removed from the bicycle;
      •   A bicycle six feet (6 ft.) long can be securely held with its frame supported in at       least two (2) places so that it cannot be pushed over or fall in a manner that              would damage the wheels or components;
      •   Racks shall be placed apart from one another, and any other obstructions, a              minimum of thirty inches (30 in.), and provide a minimum clearance width of       twelve inches (12 in.) for each bicycle; and
      •   The rack shall be securely anchored.