With the increasing number of people interested in working and living in Washington, DC, it makes sense that people would want to expand parking possibilities throughout the city. Street-parking can be incredibly inconvenient, and with hour restrictions, confusing signage and rising costs. Especially in the busy booming U-Street neighborhood, a new parking garage seems like a great idea.
The construction of this new parking garage is a topic currently under discussion. Right now, the DC Departments of Parks and Recreation are using the property, located at 1325 S Street NW, to park service vehicles and for everyday service uses. However, there are multiple small and large businesses interested in creating a municipal parking garage in order to support the influx of workers, residents, late-night diners, and tourists.
We know and love U-Street. It’s a happening area, with lots of amazing dining and theatrical opportunities. Unfortunately, the parking in the area is less than ideal. Many visitors and residents must rely on public transportation or use the metro, but what about those of us with a vehicle? There are many of us who need to park our cars for work during the day, and street parking can be incredibly inconvenient. Adding a parking garage would alleviate the pains of driving to U Street, bringing more people and more business to the area.
While a costly endeavor to start (as most construction is), it may be beneficial in the long run to have an automated lot to cut down operating costs. In a similar situation, up the road from the U Street neighborhood lies DCUSA, a 1,000 space parking structure to help alleviate the pains of parking in Columbia Heights. This year, due to sales tax revenue, DCUSA was able to pay off the garage in only five years, 15 years ahead of schedule. While most space is rented out to commuters, it helps a neighborhood shopping center get people through their doors to generate more revenue for the community.
Plans of a top deck park and additional row homes or retail space could make the parking structure a living breathing part of the neighborhood.
What do you think; would you like to see a parking structure added to the U Street corridor?