Columbus City Council is taking a close look at parking in a handful of neighborhoods, with an eye on rolling out new restrictions in the middle of next year.
The study will investigate parking trends downtown, in Franklinton, near Ohio State, and a broad swath south of I-71 encompassing the Brewery District and German Village.
Council member Emmanuel Remy says fighting congestion in those neighborhoods might mean new parking costs, but he doesn’t want to get ahead of the study’s findings.
“That could be it, but not until we get the data back,” Remy warns. “I mean not every street in these areas are going to necessarily warrant that, so until we’ve got real data to analyze and design a plan for each individual area, it’d be smarter not to say.”
Columbus parking czar Robert Ferrin says city leaders could have ideas for restrictions, permits and parking rates by April next year.
"We expect to wrap up the plan in summer of next year, and then immediately go forward with the first phase of implementation which will be working with the downtown group on recommendations that come out of the strategic parking plan," Ferrin explains.
Although the study focuses on specific areas, Ferrin expects to apply the recommendations to the city's broader parking plans.
“The strategic parking plan will apply to all areas of the city, and recommendations made in this plan will be used in other areas including Olde Towne East and other redeveloping neighborhoods,” Ferrin says.
The engineering firm Kimley Horn, which has done similar work in cities like Atlanta and Seattle, won the bid for the $300,000 project.