I do not believe that residents should “pay” for the bad planning of this City Government. Our people did not lower the parking requirement from 1.75 to 1. Our people did not Gentrify Downtown for a richer demographic. ( they said that serving the rich was cheaper than serving the poor, as the poor required so much more assistance, so they wanted to change our populations.) Those things were done by The Mayor and City Council. ( not only because they go lots of money from developers for their officeholder accounts, but also because they just didn’t do their homework or think about the unintended consequences of their decisions.) We have several solutions for more parking, none of which is the ONLY answer. Each solution, however, is reasonable and will help in this goal to help to create more parking.
Preferential Parking: This way, no one outside your neighborhood can park in your neighborhood after 9 PM. Without this, all those high rise owners with 2 cars plus (who buys a million-dollar 44 story condo and has only one car?) will hog our parking spaces in Alamitos Beach, North Alamitos Beach and on the edges of Downtown from the 1st District to the 6th.
Diagonal Parking: This gives 40% more parking. We need to map out where we can do this as the road width is required to do this, and no minor arterial can be used for the most part.
Remove the Broadway Road Diet: and restore not only the 100 spaces that were removed, restore the handicap spaces, the loading zones, and the white zones in front of our nursing home. Bring back the lanes and Restore Broadway downtown also, to comply with the disaster escape plan required by the State. Did you know the City violated that requirement? We haven’t had a Disaster Plan of Escape from Downtown since 2013. It is mind-boggling that Management thinks they will not be caught or sued. Their naive assumption that they can ask forgiveness rather than permission is laughable.
Reduce the Red Zones: On Broadway, some of the red zones are 116 feet long. In the neighborhoods, they are too long at the corners and at driveways and entrances. We can create more parking with adjustments.
Neighborhood Friendly Parking Structures: On every business corridor (and we need to re-designate Broadway as a Business corridor, since the head of Public Works, Craig Beach lied to the State and declared it residential to remove a lane of traffic. )
We need to purchase 3 lots in a row (underutilized parcels) tear them down and build 3 story parking structures, to be given to business interests during the day and the neighborhood at night. LOW fees for the spaces. On Broadway alone, we could create 5 such structures for the 5 business nodes we have. That is 700 parking spaces. Cover the buildings in brick and plant Boston ivy on them to make them green and attractive to our residents behind and adjacent. Vent them to the main street. I flew to Ann Arbor Michigan to pick up the blueprints for their structures, which have proven to have been a success and helped to restore their downtown.
Remove meters: Remove the meters on 4th Street entirely. No one needs to pay 1 dollar for one hour’s parking. The meters will impede small business success. They are now intruding into the residential neighborhood. This was a bad plan. The initial goal was to get trash containers for 4th Street on Retro Row. Instead of just paying $25,000 and purchasing the cans, the City demanded that the BID must raise the money, and they gave them only one choice….. parking meters. Bad planning, and Bad thinking. The City Management forgot they are there to serve us not punish us. I personally will raise the funds to put trash cans along 4th Street, and force the City to accept them instead of throwing up some idiotic roadblock of bureaucracy to prevent ur from installing our own solutions. If the City Balks, then we know it is time to fire some managers and we will advocate for that so strongly that the political will of Management will collapse.
Building Parking Structures Downtown: We must do this immediately or every single lot Downtown will disappear under new development with inadequate parking requirements. I suggest a very very tall structure with a corkscrew mechanism to automate parking of cars and retrieval of cars. We have the technology. Or if you want to be old-fashioned, just the spiral climb of a track to get to the top. We can adapt the architecture to match the surrounding buildings. Like Art Deco across from The Lafayette or glass and steel with rainbow lighting or blue lighting on 3rd St. or near the Pine Ave business district. Downtown is zoned Unlimited Height. Underground as well as high rise parking structures are allowed to be built as Downtown is 47 feet above ocean level.
Build up the Elephant Triangle for more Parking: Although this parcel will be in danger of ocean level rise in 15 to 20 years, We need parking now. I am not sure their “levee” will be adequate to hold back the tides. Nonetheless building up 3 stories using Tidelands funds (access to the beach would make that possible) we can create thousands of parking spaces. Let’s create a free shuttle to take people back and forth from the Parking lot to Downtown and vice versa. NO charge.
Restore the Parking on 3rd Street: Remove all the impediments to parking on this corridor which is required to be the disaster, and fire escape from Downtown anyway.
Shared Parking: Invest in an umbrella liability insurance policy for the City. This way, we can take the cost burden off of parking lots associated with businesses, churches, parks, etc so they can share their lots with residents at night. We can hire an enforcement cadre to make sure we do not interfere with the underlying business or charitable hours and services. Let the businesses set their own prices, and if we need to subsidize those prices, that is a good use of City Funds. We can do this.
Parking apps: We can create parking apps to assist in finding vacant parking spaces. This is technologically challenging, but worth the investigation. It is difficult to do a GPS driven app. And cost prohibitive to do a land “marking” or “marking” grid across the City. I have been in contact with an app developer rolling out an app that reminds commuters where street sweepers will be and when.
Street Sweeping: We need to reduce Street Sweeping to once per month in general. If a business district applies for more or a specific neighborhood applies for more, then so be it. Also, we should NEVER have street sweeping in the residential areas of the City before 9 AM, so people can get to work. We haven’t had a street sweeper on Broadway since May, and we are just fine. ( the $100.000.00 inky binky machine they bought, broke in 2 weeks. So much for the money, we need to build housing for the homeless. Waste, Waste, and Waste. Now let’s figure out who got the contract and how much of a kickback they paid to the City and to whom.
Reduce Parking Tickets: We raise over 20 million dollars on the backs of the working people of Long Beach. They even call us the “Cherry Patch” as we are such easy pickings. You know whenever they nickname you, something is horribly wrong. We must lower the parking and street sweeping tickets down to 2015 levels. Today parking tickets have been raised as they have been every year since 2015. We went from $45.00 to $75.00. This is a burden on people who did not create this absurd situation. I refuse to penalize our people for the bad planning of this short-sighted, “Pay for Play” government. There must be a limit on the number of tickets one can receive. After three, forget it. I also suggest that lowering the parking ticket fines should be done in the parking impacted areas, as designated on our City Maps, that would include Belmont Shore, Alamitos Beach and the neighborhoods of the 2nd District, Wilmore City, Drake Park, and the all the 1st District, Coolidge Triangle in the 9th district and everywhere we have designated the area as “parking impacted”. If you live in El Dorado Park and have a 2 car garage and a long driveway, then you can pay $75.00 if you can’t figure out how to park.
THE PHILOSOPHY OF THIS CITY SHOULD CHANGE TO SERVE THE PEOPLE, NOT TO PENALIZE US, ABUSE US, OR EXTRACT THEIR PAYCHECKS FROM US.
If we continue with current policy, then you are harming people on the edge of maintaining their apartments and homes. This is counterproductive to the idea of lifting up people on the borderline of being homeless. If our people are only one paycheck away from the streets then we need policies that do not push them into the streets. A little compassion and common sense are needed again in this City.
But overall, we need to hire a Parking Manager and staff, to organize, coordinate and create these policies and solutions for parking throughout the City. It is ludicrous to think we can just make policy adjustments without having a full-time oversight of these brilliant plans. Working inter-departmentally we will have a stronger, more effective impact on solving the Parking Issue.
I am gratified that all the other candidates for the 2nd District have hopped on board my policy points and support my ideas, and that is a good thing.
The question for you all is who will keep their promises, who will have the heart and strength and the fierceness to battle City Hall to get these changes? Who will be able to negotiate with the other Council Members to create a majority vote? Who will write the proposals in a convincing script and create the political will among City Council members to act? If this is a fight to restore the power of our people over a tyrannical bureaucracy then who has a proven track record to uniting our residents together.
With unity of purpose, without excluding anyone, with common cause and honor, we will rise up and tear down the walls of indifference and harm. We can do this together. Here some of the plans, outlined in specifics and thought through to logical conclusions. The power of the Truth will succeed.
It is only a win when everyone wins. Let’s unite and make the change we need and deserve.