Easy off street parking and overpaved communities are not expected in the future in the county's unincorporated areas. County supervisors opened up land use for more mixed use development on Wednesday, February 6, by approving the first update to the of street parking regulations since 1985 with the intent to give developers options for using sparing land uses to put in parking.
Going out of the way to find parking is not a typical experience the supervisors have planned though a Valle De Oro community group expressed concerns the demand for parking will fill up the lower amount of spaces, and leave parkers without a space. The Planning Commission, after hearing the concerns, decided to make no changes and a year ago voted unanimously to send the new regulations to the Board. They could not agree to the community group's plan that the commission said would have allowed excess parking and have left open spaces.
One of the top goals in updating the regulations was to give developers more choices for choosing a parking ratio, the number of spaces needed for the development use. Need can now depend on the type of use. Developers have the choice of using either square footage or the building occupancy to calculate the parking need.
In addition to the sparing use of parking for cars that surrounds homes and businesses, and the bicycle spaces that must be within 100 feet of an entrance, the new regulations say developers have to handle the needs of electric car drivers. Both electric vehicle parking spaces and refueling stalls will get put in.
Supervisors are counting on a mutual use of parking local owners work out and agree on to ensure no one's space gets taken. Putting plans to meet parking demand into the hands of the owners was supported by the Building Industry Association. Two businesses that share a property lot line can build one parking lot for collective use by both businesses' employees and customers as long as the total number of spaces is the same number the regulations in the zoning ordinance require. Developers can also meet the same demand by using fewer spaces. Two or more developers who get an administrative permit and sign a shared parking agreement can bypass the regular space count requirement. The regular parking just has to come at different times. Night parkers and day parkers can avoid claims on the same parking space. So can weekday industrial employees and weekend churchgoers.
BIA supported giving owners the freedom to fit their parkers in one place. Parking together in the same place in line, called tandem parking can make living in multi-family village practical, and working at an industrial sized building.
Overparked areas are expected to disappear in communities in Spring Valley and Lakeside, and the other outer county cities. With less space used for parking, developers can put in mixed use development, and add the community jobs that come with it.
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