Monday, December 10, 2012

Park-n-Ride Hell

I'm all for more trains everywhere, but instead we should really be encouraging (and by encouraging, I mostly mean allowing) infill development around stations instead of spending immense amounts of money on parking. Philly has a very extensive commuter rail system, and plenty of the stations are in places which are almost-sorta-kinda-walkable, but the big parking lots around the stations don't help that. Zone for multi-story, multi-family mixed use around the stations. That's the way to get more riders.

On Thursday, the SEPTA board approved spending up to $282,788 for 4.86 acres owned by real-estate developer Wolfson Verrichia Group Inc., of Plymouth Meeting. The deal is still in negotiation, and the board on Thursday authorized SEPTA officials to acquire the property rights by condemnation if the developer declines to sell.

"We've had numerous discussions, and it's our intention to amicably acquire it," said SEPTA real estate director Gerald M. Maier.

About 3.5 acres would be used to build a 600-space parking garage, and 1.3 acres would be used for an access road to connect with U.S. 1, Maier said.

Parking constraints at many stations are real, but the solution isn't more parking. It's more people being able to walk.