Philadelphia’s surplus of parking spaces is prompting the city to incentivize developers to add more high-value Center City projects instead, writes David Harrison for The Wall Street Journal.
The city estimates that parking spots in downtown garages went down in number from 50,023 in 2010 to 45,898 in 2020, to be replaced with office and condo towers.
According to Robert Zuritsky, chief executive of Parkway, a 22.5 percent gross-receipts tax on parking operators is driving many to sell their properties or redevelop them.
Philadelphia’s deputy revenue commissioner Rebecca Lopez Kriss said that the tax is used to encourage more high-value development.
“The parking tax is really one strategy to promote alternative transportation options and sustainable land use,” she said.
Comcast built its skyscraper on a former parking lot, while the headquarters building for Morgan Lewis & Bockius is currently going up on another.
Some, like Corie Moskow, executive director of the Rittenhouse Row Business Merchants Association, are worried that a lack of parking spaces will keep people from visiting downtown stores and restaurants.
“We want to make it easier for people to come,” she said. “Having less parking space isn’t making it easier.”
Read more about the parking issue in The Wall Street Journal.
Parking is a common feature of streets, but is that really the best use of street space?