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I am back on the mainland and blogging from Seattle with South Austin in the rearview mirror. Don't worry Virgin Island fans, I will most certainly be back in the Caribbean for visits if not full-time. And I'm sure St. Thomas will creep it's way into many future posts. For now, it's all about living in the Pacific Northwest!

March 4, 2011

Parking Downtown in Austin - Follow Up

Hey all you fellow Austinites, it looks like the results of the parking survey are in. You can view the full results here Survey Results. As expected, the proposed changes are being adopted. I'll refrain from comment and instead provide some of the result hightlights:

50% of visitors stay downtown more than 3 hours when visiting

76% says that FREE parking is more important than convenience

81% say they are LESS likely to go downtown if meter hrs are extended

The LEAST important priority to those responding to the survey was meter enforcement

But perhaps the only result that matters is this one: 59% of 7,516 responders say that they did not pay to park during their most recent visits

I will comment that it's understandable that revenue needs to be made to support the local and state infrastructure and all kinds of programs that make Austin a great city to live in. And parking is a logical way to obtain revenue directly from users. I wonder which projects or programs this particular revenue boost will support?

I am not part of the 81% that say they won't go downtown if  meter hours are extended. I love downtown. And when I am swiping my debit card through a meter to attend a show or event, I'll say a little prayer and hope that the extra revenue going to the State is helping to balance our budget. That, I can stomach. At least it is easier to digest than the publicly touted supporting argument that businesses downtown are suffering because of the lack of turn-over that free parking after 5:30pm creates.

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