Vagabond Shark

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Parking requirements a problem for North Bethany

Posted by Peter W on August 9, 2007

I’ve been reading Washington County’s parking requirements codes (and others). There are a number of problems I found, mainly with parking, and I think the whole project has some road problems as well. Those are below.

There is an open house for the North Bethany project tonight. Hopefully folks interested in biking and public transit show up.

Project Open house #3 – Thursday, August 9, 2007 – 4:30-7 p.m.
Portland Community College Rock Creek Campus
Events Center, Building 9 17705 NW Springville Rd. Portland

More info: http://bethanyplan.org/page_8.php
If you can’t make the open house tonight, you can comment here: http://bethanyplan.org/page_5.php

Problems and Ideas:

  • The county is claiming this will be a bike and pedestrian friendly development, but they don’t appear to be focusing on reducing automobile trips. In fact, the site will generate so much traffic that they expect the cost of increasing capacity outside the
    site to be about $300 million dollars.
  • For the sake of cyclists in the rest of the county, it would be nice if they focused on how to make public transit work – for example by increasing density so every how is within 1/4 mile of frequent bus service. In addition they should have bus service between N. Bethany and key destinations such as Portland, Beaverton, and Hillsboro.
  • Another thing the County could do is design the site so it has everything people living there will need – offices, a grocery store, cafes, a theatre, etc.
  • Neighborhood streets are large enough to allow on street parking, so the number of cars that can be parked on the street should be included in the parking maximum limit for the new developments.
  • Washington County requires a minimum of 1 parking space per 1 bedroom unit, so even if you don’t drive you’ll still have to pay for parking. The smallest amount of space required is 12×20 feet, or 240 sq. ft. That is enough space for a bedroom. In addition to that off street parking space, a one unit residence would also require 2 (!) off street spaces. Its no
    wonder why affordable housing is so hard to create…
  • Washington County has no maximum parking limit for residential development, even if it is within a transit friendly area (within 1/4 mile from frequent bus service or 1/2 mile of MAX).
  • Schools have to have 1 space per teacher (and 1 per 5 students for high schools) even if there is plenty of on-street parking nearby.
  • Why do schools even need parking spaces for students? Students should all live close enough to walk, and tax payers shouldn’t be forced to subsidize parking for kids rich enough to buy cars.
  • The parking maximum at high schools is the same regardless of if it is in a transit friendly area.
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One Response to “Parking requirements a problem for North Bethany”

  1. Jen said

    “Why do schools even need parking spaces for students? Students should all live close enough to walk, and tax payers shouldn’t be forced to subsidize parking for kids rich enough to buy cars.”

    Agreed. Plus, high schoolers driving only causes problems.

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