Some people are hesitant to move to Long Beach because of the parking situation, but most people don’t realize how much it has been steadily improving. It is true that there used to be a lack of street parking that would occasionally force residents to walk for several blocks, but the council has not only recognized the issue, it has taken multiple steps to improve it.
Recognizing the Problems
Before they started to take any action, the council members in Long Beach took the time to actually consider the root of the parking problem. They realized that more homes with two vehicles as well as increased family-units that don’t have enough parking space available were contributing to the problem. To complicate the parking issue even more, some Long Beach residents have illegally split rooms or converted garages, increasing the area’s population without a corresponding increase in parking space.
The Parking Impacted Area
The team working on parking solutions used the information they got to find the area that is most affected by the parking problems. Portions of several council districts were affected and it is these areas that most of the solutions focus on. Each of these ‘zones’ had 75% or more of their street parking spaces occupied nightly, meaning that although there was still parking availability, it was a bit more difficult to find.
Reducing the Need
Part of the reason that Long Beach has seen such drastic improvements in terms of parking in the last few years is due to the various methods to reduce the need for it in the first place. Long Beach is on its way to becoming one of the top cities in the country for bicycle friendliness, and the increased number of bicycles means that there are less drivers who need to park cars. There are also plenty of pedestrian friendly developments in the work as well as the possibility of recreating the streetcar system. That system would connect various areas of Long Beach to downtown, reducing the need to find street parking for many people.
Adding New Overnight Parking
The actual set of parking solutions has three different phases and within the first phase alone, there were 1,000 new overnight parking spaces for residents added. This involved re-designating certain city parking and within phases two and three, more street parking was added. Keep in mind, however, that when you move to Long Beach, certain streets that used to run in both directions are now one way and the reduction in lanes was able to add 19 extra parking spaces.
Community Parking Program
You will never have a problem finding parking in Long Beach with the recent changes that have taken place since 2006. In addition to the increased number of parking spots and promotion of other transportation, there is also a new Community Parking Program. This program lets you go online to the website and see where parking locations throughout Long Beach are located. As a bonus, that same website even has activities so you can find fun things to do when you are still getting used to the area.