Wanted to get peoples opinion regarding parking in the central district area. We are looking to buy a home in the area but are really finding it hard to get over the fact that many homes in the central district do not have a garage and street parking is crazy with both lanes being used to park cars and it always seems to be that the streets are always full of cars and no place to park even in front of the home you own!!!! Is teh central district going to be permit parking in the future??? Is it already??? what do you do do you ask the owner of the car thats parked in front of your home to move so that you have your “allocated space”???? also what about car thefts? dmages? wheels being stolen?? have head a lot of examples that this happens alot in the area?? can anyone confirm this????
I think only Cherry Hill permits for parking. Not sure what it’s boundaries are, but I think you can get a parking permit anywere within about 5 blocks of Swedish Cerry Hill 14th to 22nd, Spruce to Union.
The CD is a big area and means a lot of things to different people, so giving a cross street would probably help a lot in evaluating the issue.
You have no ‘allotted space’ if you don’t have a drive way. You might get parking right in front of your house or it might be two blocks away, but you don’t have any intrinsic right to a space in front of your house just because it is your house.
My experience being close to 23rd & Union is that parking can be tough during work days because of the post office but is very easy on the weekends and nights. Your results might vary depending on where you are at.
Theft and break ins do occur, as does graffiti. But it is fairly infrequent, probably no more so than cap hill. If you regularly leave stuff in your car or drive something prone to that kind of theft (acura, honda) then get yourself a cheap alarm.
Bear in mind that most of the Central District was developed in the early 1900s before cars were all that ubiquitous, so older homes are not going to have garages or driveways that are up to modern car size needs.
Previous poster is correct that there are no “alloted spaces” in front of your home — it is first come, first serve in most places. That said, it is city law that cars must be moved within a certain period of time, 72 hours I believe, or it can be ticketed. But that is usually only enforced if someone calls and complains, they come out and chalk it and then you have to get them to check up again after the perscribed time lapse.
The parking permits are usually only implemented surrounding “large institutions” such as schools and hospitals. Swedish Cherry Hill has it and I know a small area (1 -2 blocks) around Garfield High School has a Zone parking (2 hrs max without permit). I believe these zoned parking areas are only implemented when enighbors organize and request it, probably with some “proof” of why it is needed. You then usually have to purchase a zone permit every 2 years (used to be around $30 – 40) for each car.
I can tell you from experience that street parking in the Central District is MUCH easier than on most parts of Capitol Hill, even than with a permit for the zoned areas there.
I’ve found it to be NO PROBLEM and have lived in 7 apts/homes in the CD. Considering we live in a city, walking distance to downtown…i think parking isn’t a problem…
playing “chicken” on some of these streets sometimes IS…(i always pull over)
I believe that the last time we got a permit it was free — but we had to pay for a “guest” permit. I think it was only like 20 bucks though.
I think parking is easy in the CD compared to other neighborhoods — I’m on a zoned street which is usually full with hospital employees, but if I go another half a block, there’s plenty of space.
Car thefts/break-ins/etc happen. But more cars aren’t messed with on a given day than are. I don’t leave anything valuable in my car (including in the trunk) and it seems fine.
and we’ve been here for awhile.
I was a little concerned when the big Safeway went in that we’d have more problems on our street, but even though through traffic has increased a bit (slow down would ya please…..) parking isn’t an issue. We don’t have a garage or driveway (our 1912 house was built before the concept of a car for every citizen was even a gleam in Henry Ford’s eye). We park on the street and usually have our space when we need it. That said we don’t drive much either, so the car stays where its at more often than not. We’re all generally good neighbors about parking too – no one parks in another person’s spot unless there’s nothing else at all and then moves the car as soon as a place in front of their own house opens up.
CDGal is correct that sometimes you don’t have to pay for the Zone permits if the Zone implementation requires the large institution to pay for them. This was the case near the Group Health on 15th Ave on Capitol Hill. But when I moved about 4 blocks west within the same Zone # I then had to pay a fee to the city for the permit, probably because I was closer to the Broadway shopping district then and there was no one large institution to require paying for the permits.
ANything free tends to be used up and wasted. There are many complex trade-offs associated with housing and parking. People walked to work or to street cars when the houses where built 1900 to 1910.
Many houses were built on piers with crawl spaces. actual basements with cinderblock foundation walls were added later after the Depression through the fifties to accomodate garages separated from the rest of the basement by fire-doors etc.
Call in an “abandoned” car after a few days or report it online. It may turn out to be stolen. Park around the corner on the short side of a block where there are few houses. Put in a well-drained gravel (permeable) driveway if room permits. Get a smaller car, scooter, electric bike, or use a zipcar….Good Luck! The benefits of being close to everything are outweighed by tight parking.Walking is good for us.
–Finally–I agree that neighborhood side streets with parking on one side only are desirable public amenities that support solid private property values. Keep yours if you have it, and try to restore if you don’t.
We have lived in the CD for about 5 years. Even though parking is only allowed on one side of the street, there is usually no problem finding some place to park near our house. However, some members in the household say that the only problem is that some neighbors don’t “know” how to park. For example, “they” leave big gaps between parked cars in a way that only two cars can park in a place where three could fit. Also, there are some folks who park on the street when there is room in their driveway….RANT OFF.
Thanks everyone for the advice….much appreciated…