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Committee supports parking district expansion

Thursday, December 3, 2015 by Tyler Whitson

The City Council Mobility Committee voted unanimously on Wednesday to recommend that Council approve a request from West Campus business, institution and property owner group University Area Partners to expand a parking benefit district in the area. The expansion would add 315 paid parking spaces by increasing the district boundaries to include Rio Grande Street to Lamar Boulevard between Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and 29th Street. Steve Grassfield, the city’s parking enterprise manager, explained that Mayor Pro Tem Kathie Tovo, who represents the district where the expansion would occur, responded positively to the idea and said that all areas where stakeholders opposed the expansion have been carved out of it. Austin Transportation Department Director Robert Spillar wrote in a letter to Mayor Steve Adler and Council that a parking benefit district “enables neighborhood associations to make requests to the City of Austin for paid parking in an effort to provide turnover and improve availability of on-street parking to business customers and visitors to the area.” Fifty-one percent of the revenue, after city costs, goes to transportation improvements in the district, and the remainder goes to the Austin Transportation Department. The district’s current boundaries are Guadalupe Street to Rio Grande Street between Martin Luther King and 29th. Council will consider the expansion on Dec. 10.

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