We have made the city council of Oakland, CA. In August I commented on the brouhaha that is going on there over parking. They read my post in the council meeting. It pretty much speaks for itself. The council folded and rates have been rolled back.
From what I can see, I was accurate. They raised parking rates from $1.50 to $2.00 and extended parking fees from 6 to 8 PM. All hell broke loose. However, it turns out that “hell” is really described as one merchant with a loud voice. He has been on TV, has signs up on his theatre, and has threatened everyone from the Mayor on down. He gets a lot of press. This is exactly what I said in the first post.
There don’t seem to be any facts. No study done prior to the increase, no study done now. At least no one is quoting them. This is an emotional issue fanned by a few rabble-rousers and the press.
I feel very sorry for the council who it seems is acting in good faith.
In the end, what must happen and is underway, is a citywide survey, a lot of cooling off, and some good public relations.
It would shock me that the parking fees will destroy Oakland. I wonder if the merchants have looked inward and tried to determine what they need to do to get people to come downtown. My guess is that the answer is “no.” They look to the government to provide everything.
Remember the “line in the movie” – If you build it, they will come.