From San Francisco to Portland to London, cities have discovered a successful mechanism to spur economic growth and improve the vitality of their commercial districts. Now, it's Chicago's turn!
to London, cities
have discovered a successful mechanism to spur economic growth and improve
the vitality of their commercial districts. They are finessing the valuable
public real estate currently devoted to free or cheap parking to enhance access to
and use of their local shopping area. Now, Transportation Enhancement Districts,
or TEDs, are slated to be tested
TEDs charge market rates for
parking on the street and use part of the increased revenue to make the area
more accessible by foot, transit, bike, and car. They are managed similar to a
Special Service Area. Popularized by UCLA professor Don Shoup, TEDs promise to
solve much more than a perceived or real lack of parking. By pricing meters
according to the time of day – so that at any given time 20 percent of the spots
are vacant – drivers are assured easy access to their favorite shops and
restaurants, retail establishments do not lose customers to districts with
plentiful parking, and the municipality and community share in increased
revenue. Everyone is a winner.
Of course, the ultimate value of
Transportation Enhancement Districts is not making it easier for drivers to find
a parking spot; the goal is attracting more people to local establishments and
strengthening neighborhoods. Enhancement districts can be used to make the area
more walking-oriented and connected to the larger neighborhood, improve transit
connects, invite more bicycling, and revitalize the streetscape to reflect the
character of the neighborhood.
Through the collaborative efforts
on the part of the Metropolitan Planning Council, the Department of Planning and
Development, Aldermen, and community organizations, the Chicago City Council’s
Committee on Traffic Control and Safety passed a resolution in early 2007 to
explore the implementation of Transportation Enhancement Districts in three
pilot areas: 53
Street in Hyde Park; Milwaukee Avenue in Logan
Square; Clark Street in Andersonville, and in the Bryn Mawr shopping district in
Edgewater. These trials will iron out the kinks and quirks of the TED strategy
and define a clear policy that can be transferred to other areas across the
The City of
has the unique
opportunity to be at the forefront of innovation for parking management. Unlike
existing model TED locations, Chicago has an especially rich and expanding
walking culture, a strong transit system, and more and more people bicycling.
Our neighborhoods are fortunate enough to have these assets, and the TED program
aims to further capitalize on their ability to anchor neighborhood development
and feed on our city’s particular strengths.
Read the fact
sheet on TEDs.
Find answers to frequently asked questions
Read MPC’s testimony to the
Chicago City Council’s Committee on Traffic and Safety on Transportation
Read the TED resolution .
Read Pursuits; Cities: The Parking Fix
(The Wall Street Journal).
Read Traffic plan calls for pricier parking along busy streets
(Chicago Sun Times).
Watch a presentation from Donald Shoup on his book,
The High Cost of Free Parking
Read Turning Small Change into Big Changes
by Donald Shoup and Douglas Kolozsvari.