Parking

Emily Corwin / NHPR

For over ten years, the city of Portsmouth has been trying to decide whether and where to build a second downtown parking garage.  On Monday night, city councilors voted unanimously to bond a $23 million new garage.

Of the 150 or so people who packed City Hall, more than 50 testified in favor of the garage; four testified against it.  Pressure was on for the three city councilors who had indicated uncertainty over the project.

Garage Enthusiasts

Downtown Portsmouth.
Squirrel Flight via Flickr/Creative Commons: http://www.flickr.com/photos/squirrelflight/1355544138/in/photostream/

Officials in Portsmouth are set to vote Monday night on a proposed $23.2 million downtown parking garage.

The city council is scheduled to hold a public hearing before voting on the proposal.

The six-story parking garage is expected to create an additional 600 new parking spots downtown.

Hundreds of people have signed a petition opposed to the project.

The City of Portsmouth is taking action to reduce the parking squeeze downtown. 


Emily Corwin / NHPR

Portsmouth planners say in the next six years, the city will need at least 650 more parking spaces But last year, a new parking lot championed by the then-mayor failed to gather support among city councilors. The future of parking in the city became a divisive issue in last November’s council election.

On Monday, the newly elected council took the oath of office.  It's likely this month they will begin trying to reach agreement once again on whether a new parking garage downtown will help or harm the future of Portsmouth.

 

Photo by Wouter Kiel, courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons

The average American vehicle spends a whopping 95% of its life parked.  And yet, for all of the engineers and urban planners who study how humans and cars interact on the road, one man stands out as an authority how our lives, towns and experiences are affected once those cars stop.