Housing Affordability Committee: Tear Down This Parking! (And Build Homes for Humans!)


Therefore, the City should consider removing the parking requirement for single family homes.

Wait, what? So are all the older houses without driveways grandfathered?

I'm not a lawyer, but how is forcing 'new' single family homes to eat the cost of parking not an equal protection issue?
Did you let HALA write this for you? When people call out the war on parking it isn't developers talking. The people complaining are the people trying to find a parking spot. It is the people who pay hundreds of dollars a month to park. The war on parking means that when those parking spots run out the cost of the existing parking spots goes up. So people who need to drive for work need to pay out of pocket. Developers love it because they can build and sell more units. The city loves it because it forces more people to use mass transit. But everyone can't use mass transit.

I know the city is changing. It is going to continue to change with time. The question is if we are changing to be something that the majority do not like. We are currently building a city for the wealthy and the poor. The middle class is being left out.
"...rabid parking hatred..." Yep, that pretty much encompass their argument.
The median monthly rent has risen 27% in the rent controlled super liberal controlled San Francisco. The only people who can live in the city are the rich, and the poor on subsidy. The rest are forced to travel by car, bus, train, or boat. Basically middle class is extinct in San Francisco. So why are we pushing for the same policies? If you make the developers pay fees then the rent goes up for the units. That money goes to the government who isn't helping the middle class any time soon. This is anti middle class Seattle. We tax the rich and give to the poor. But no one asks about the middle class who are asked to move elsewhere.
@1 Older houses without driveways don't have to build new parking for the house, but you do have to provide off-street parking for any ADU or DADU. Because off-street parking is going to eat into your lot coverage allowance, many small-lot single family homes aren't able to build DADUs - or have to build so small that it doesn't make economic sense to do so. Parking isn't an issue in nearly all areas zoned single family, unless many of the homes in the area are actually multi-family, built before the area was rezoned, or unless the area butts up next to a high-density zone.

Parking is a major cost issue in large multi-family developments because the parking has to go underground, not on a concrete pad in the backyard.
Every thing must be squished. Unused commercial space. Empty warehouses, Lots. Mansions. Tax it to death until they build small lot homes and sell them off at low cost. Any human claiming more than 2000 sq. ft. of total space should be jailed.

The complainers are so full of shit. Look, if you want to own a car, pay to store it. If on-site storage is important to you, limit your search to those housing units that provide them. It's an amenity; lots of people have certain amenities they want in housing. The government shouldn't mandate parking any more than it should swimming pools and rooftop decks. Car storage is expensive, and we built a society that obscures that fact--either by subsidy or by hiding the costs of 'free' parking elsewhere on the bill--from most drivers most of the time. You don't have an affirmative right to have that cost hidden from you or paid for you going forward.

In a lot of cases, mandating parking for SF homes actually makes parking worse. You lose one on-street space to the curb cut, then the homeowner fills their garage or driveway with crap and parks on the street anyway. I can't blame them, really--the government won't give them free storage for the other stuff, but it will for the car--but that doesn't mean it's a choice that makes any sense or should be mandated.
War on parking = war on cars. Hard to get around that true-ism, isn't it?
Yet another stunningly naive piece by junior "journalist", Ansel Herz. What, no Amazon hit piece today? Did the editors tell you to try and write something adult?

I quit reading The Stranger a while back, right before it sunk to the bottom of the toilet. Once in a blue moon I'll revisit it and it just confirms I've made the right decision to get my news at a serious news source. Herz represents what The Stranger has devolved into - amateur kids using this rag as a jumping off point to real journalism (or they get sacked, like all of the good ones have). The mere fact that they now take Sunday off ("No news happens on Sunday") says all you need to know about The Stranger. It's a joke now, and most people in Seattle know it. I'm not alone in this opinion - far from it. Most people consider The Stranger a sad, reactionary shadow of what it used to be. It was once important, but now is just a joke. Just look at the lack of hits on the pages here. Ansel Herz is the absolute worst, most childish "writer" on here. Comically bad, consistently inaccurate, juvenile knee-jerk reactionism against anything that actually helps our economy, he's a joke and The Stranger's insistence on keeping him says all I need to know about the leadership at this paper. He could never find work elsewhere, so this joint keeps him on to keep the 18-25 year old reactionary "lefties" entertained. Take it from a serious, adult lefty - Herz does us a disservice with his misinformation and FOX News style lies.

I'm done wasting time reading this pablum. May the Keck empire spiral down the toilet like it deserves to.
@4 "So why are we pushing for the same policies?"

Of course, the HALA report is pretty much the exact opposite of what San Francisco has done. As much as we restrict new housing supply they restrict it far, far more. During the growth of hte 90's and 00's they were adding a paltry 1500 units a year. Idiots like Tim Redmond are still arguing the key is to stop building housing, as if that'll stop the rich people from coming. HALA at least kind of tries to be serious about making sure the supply of housing will rise with demand. San Francisco has never done anything remotely like that.

What eliminating the parking requirements does is it allows those of us who don't want or need car storage space to avoid paying for it, thus making our housing cheaper. That's it. If convenient, on-site car storage is something people want, they can pay the upcharge for it, just like granite countertops. The idea that this one amenity is something everyone should be forced to pay for is wasteful, reactionary nonsense.
RDPence: there's no law mandating kayak storage in all or indeed any housing units. It's an amenity; it I want it I need to buy a house that provides it. And yet no one ever seems to talk about a war on kayaks. People who own kayaks, like people who own almost everything, understand that figuring out storage for their stuff is their own job. Why are cars the exception to this sensible rule?
So... It costs a lot to build a parking spot. Blah-blah-blah. Street parking is a limited resource, so how about making the whole of Seattle a (modified) RPZ and charge apartment dwellers (and anyone else without an off-street spot) market rates for parking on-street. Surely no one can object to that. What is a fair price for an on-street overnight parking pass? $50 per month? $100 per month? $300 per month? I assume that those who support building apartments with no parking will support appropriate street parking rates based on what the market will bear, right?
Um, yes? I've always advocated the city charging demand-based rates for street parking. They smartly started doing exactly that downtown under McGinn and it has been successful. Of course, in much of the city market rate would be zero dollars, as street parking is still generally available. But why not? Government should provide public goods. Storing your stuff for you is pretty much universally understood as a private good, with the car exception.
Yes, when is the vast conservative majority of Seattleites going to rise up and
@12 - I wish, but don't hold your breath. There are countless people who want an inexpensive place to live sans on-site parking but expect to be able to park on-street for free. Just look at aPodments. If you start to charge for on-street parking based on its scarcity (meaning more than the token fees currently charged) people will complain that they're being 'priced out of parking' just like they're currently complaining about being priced out of housing.
Sure. People are dumb. I've seen people whose time is worth well over $100 an hour spend 30 aggravating minutes searching for free parking rather than paying $6. The conditioning to expect free parking is strong for many people, but there's no good reason to coddle it. But if they insist on paying for their car storage in wasted Tim rather than $, that's not my problem. Just Don't pretend it's a problem the government should solve for you ny making other peoples housing more expensive.
Let's ask the question, "how many more cars will fit on Capitol Hill?" We can build more and more storage for them and say we've solved the problem of where the cars will sit while not being used. There are a few thousand cubic feet of earth we can displace. But the car-dependent lifestyle and parking entitlements that enable it can borrow against the future only as long as we all continue to argue that car ownership in high density neighborhoods is a right rather than an imposition.

At rush hour, driving from 15th and John to the nearest fast-food drive-through in Rainier Valley, 4 miles each way, took me 1 hour and 15 minutes. Getting to and from Capitol Hill in a car when all of the rest of our cars are doing the same thing is a dysturban nightmare.

Accommodating more cars with more parking spots doesn't fix any problem except for where all these cars are going to be kept when they're not causing traffic. This idea that we all cram into a dense neighborhood because of its convenience but can still insist that we retain our suburban motorist access to everything that's not within walking distance is a dead end.

The urban roadways in high density, transit rich, walkable neighborhoods are not something that you just dump something on. It's not a big truck. It's a series of tubes...

I put a 128 gb SSD in my Macbook, replacing its 500 gb HD. The screaming speed of the upgrade astounded me. But I didn't ever think that I should be able to park my 100 gb iPhoto library on it just like I did when it took me a minute and 20 seconds to load up Photoshop instead of the new 5 second load time. I parked my big files on a 1 TB network drive in SODO and called Uber to drive me there if I needed something I legitimately, but infrequently, owned that much storage for.
@2 and 4: Tell me just where this city of the poor that gives to the poor is. I haven't seen any trace of it in Seattle.
@11, so cars = kayaks in your worldview? Might be defensible if the percentage of households with cars equaled the percentage with kayaks. But it isn't, is it? And the city allows cars to park on the street but not kayaks. I think your just joshing us tonight, David; I'm beginning to see the humor.
@1 Yes, all houses in Seattle without off-street parking were built before the requirements went into effect. Grandfathering is a pretty accurate description.

@2 Please see the city's repeated parking studies that show OVER HALF of the off-street parking spaces in the city are empty, in every neighborhood. There is no parking shortage. Go stroll through the government-mandated garages under every new apartment building... mostly empty. People who complain about not being able to find parking should look at comment #16.
@19: They are similar in one crucial respect--it's unreasonable and unfair to demand that all people--whether they have a kayak/car or not--pay for storage of said item. They're both optional, and they're both things many thousands of people don't own. Why should those of us who don't own them be forced to pay to store them? Please be specific.
Two Seattle administrations or is it three that developers have sold on the no car space trip. Cheaper affordable, Yada Yada Yada. I don't go to Capitol Hill for example to spend my money cause you can't park there. It's too close to Seattle as well.
We used to rent half of a duplex in Laurelhurst. No off-street parking for anyone on our side of the street if I remember right. But definitely not for our two units. Our across the street neighbor hated renters, if anyone parked in front of his house he'd set his sprinkler next to the car to soak it down. He lived for summer days when people wouldn't roll their windows up when parking.
If we had a reasonably functional public transit system this wouldn't be much of an issue. Since we don't, it is.
Parking your car in front of your house is one thing, but for a business (in a city without decent transit) it's a key economic issue. If people can't get to your business then you're screwed. If they can get close but can't find a reasonable parking spot, then they can't get there. Lost customers. Lost business.
We have to be realistic in that much of Seattle is still only effectively served by car. Some of it is becoming like Manhattan where car ownership is a real burden, but unlike Manhattan there isn't a better alternative.
If developers want to build without any parking, then they should have to give some real money towards improving public transit. Maybe not as much as it would cost to build the parking, but enough to be a real source for improving public transit to move those new residents without cars.
What seems to always go unsaid when this debate comes up is that eliminating parking requirements, for multi-unit buildings anyway, is a big huge juicy gift to developers. I suspect the pro-density, environmental spin is almost always complete bullshit. City government in Seattle has its tongue deeply lodged in the butt cracks of the developers who are furiously turning this place into a carbon copy of Bellevue. Also, removing parking requirements does not make cars disappear. It is basically a public subsidy for new development. Developers get to save a bundle by foisting all the new cars their developments bring to a neighborhood onto the public.
@24 - Bingo. I'm a card carrying member of the Urbanist Army in the War on Cars, but I'm also practical. As it stands now new developments can get out of the off-street parking requirements if they're located a quarter of a mile from a bus line that runs every 15 minutes for 12 hours. After work hours or on weekends, this city's transit service is pitiful, even with the added Prop. 1 hours. Waiting 15 minute for a bus isn't a big deal for a regular transit user like myself, but I'm a minority in this culture of immediate gratification and "time-is-money." I recognize the harm of centering our built environment around cars, but we can't force people out of their cars until we provide them with a reliable and responsive transit system. That "frequent transit" rule should be every 10 minutes for 15+ hours of the day, or even better. Prop. 1 was a band aid where a tourniquet was needed.

Virtually every other expensive amenity has an impact on the price consumers pay, in rent or purchase cost, for housing. People end up paying more for pools, rooftop decks, exercise facilities, granite countertops, etc etc etc. These things impact price, for what I assume are obvious reasons. Your claim that this rule *only* benefits developers, not renters who don't want to be forced to pay for a parking spot they don't want or need, appears to assume that parking is unlike all other amenities relative to price. I'd love to see an explanation for why the economic story about this particular amenity is entirely unique.
@26: but we can't force people out of their cars until we provide them with a reliable and responsive transit system.

To, again, state the obvious, this policy change does nothing of the sort. People who want car storage can choose to rent or buy in places that provide it. It'll cost them more, just like any other amenity, but if the convenience of a car over transit is as valuable as you suggest I expect many people will pay. We'll actually start finding out how much this particular convenience is worth to people. Parking minimums effective force non-drivers to subsidize drivers' car storage. That is neither fair nor wise.
@27 That is something of a stretch. I have never heard of a building, in the city center anyway, with free parking. Usually the car owners are paying, plenty, to have a space. But it is worth noting that the developers that are most likely to benefit from the elimination of parking requirements are the ones throwing up the most shitty cheap ass buildings, many of which will probably be falling apart long before parking fees can pay for the cost of putting in a garage.

The fees typically associated with parking spots are almost always less than their portion of the cost of providing that parking. They really don't pay "plenty" assuming plenty is meant to imply a relationship with the cost of providing the parking. From a sightline study a couple of years ago:

"Car-free tenants still pay for parking. Landlords’ losses on parking, calculated as the difference between total parking costs and total parking fees collected from tenants, add up to roughly 15 percent of monthly rents in our sample, or $246 per month for each occupied apartment. Because landlords typically recoup these losses through apartment rents, all tenants—even those who don’t own cars—pay a substantial hidden fee for parking as part of their monthly rents."

Because people have been exposed to years of "free" parking, they've been conditioned into thinking parking costs a lot less than it does. So selling people on 1450 rent/150 parking is easier on selling them on 1300/300, even if the latter more closely resembles a breakdown of the actual cost.

Full study here:
One of the reasons landlords can't sell parking at cost to tenants, of course, is that the government gives it away for free, albeit in more competitive and inconvenient environment. This perverse incentive makes parking minimums all the more wasteful, and all the more costly to people who don't own cars. I can't exactly blame the car driver who'd rather compete for a less convenient giveaway than pay the full cost. The main complaint about parking seems to be "I want the government to keep giving this away for free, but somehow stop other people from using it so it's more convenient for me to use." I see no good reason why public policy should ever pander such an obviously unreasonable demand.
Rhizome, you are tough and hardy as your moniker.

#30, you are quoting from Sightline institute doc, a non profit "think tank" out to assist people (developers in this case) in making long term community changes (HALA recommendations) and run by Alan Durning who sits on HALA committee!

Sigh. These are the long reaches.
The study was clear about its methods and used data collected by the city. Are you accusing the authors of some sort of fraud? What part of the analysis seems suspect to you? Insinuating fraud without coming out and saying it is a shitty thing to do. Attacking the messenger is a cheap and easy way to dismiss inconvenient facts.

Its findings are very much in line with the conclusions reached by academic work on the effects of parking minimums. It's merely confirming a dynamic that Douglas Shoup, for example, has identified in many other cities. The empirical evidence that minimum parking requirements raise the cost of housing, and that cost is borne by all residents, including those who do not own cars, is robust and strong.

If you want more convenient parking, and you think it makes good sense to force those who don't own cars to subsidize your convenience, that's your right. But please don't pretend you can turn this inequality-enhancing, anti-environmental position into a progressive one merely by doubling down on demonizing developers and pretending studies whose findings you find inconvenient are fraudulent.
@30 Ah well I guess your viewpoint on this issue all depends on what outcomes you prefer. Do you want to grease the wheels for developers so the process of morphing this city into Bellevue can take off even more than it already has, or do you want to throw sand in their gears pretty much whenever possible. I want to do the latter. If I wanted to live in fucking Bellevue I would move there.

The only way you are going to get developers to build affordable housing is to force them to, and I'm all for that (part of throwing sand in their gears). No parking requirements just means fatter profit margins. I guarantee you the savings passed on to renters would be rather negligible. Oh yeah, and as mentioned above: most people would probably shrug at removing parking requirements if we had anything close to a comprehensive public transportation system in this city. I don't expect to see anything like that in my lifetime at the rate we are moving.

How is preserving parking requirements turning Seattle into Bellevue?
I ask because as far as I can tell, most buildings in Bellevue have parking within.
I don't think you are following. Removing parking requirements is a huge giveaway to developers. Developers are turning this city into a soul crushing office park. I am not interested in further facilitating this process and I'm not buying the bullshit pro-density/affordability spin.

Ah well I guess your viewpoint on this issue all depends on what outcomes you prefer

What does that mean? This issue has been studied. You can't turn facts you find inconvenient into mere opinions.

Do you want to grease the wheels for developers so the process of morphing this city into Bellevue can take off even more than it already has, or do you want to throw sand in their gears pretty much whenever possible. I want to do the latter.

Again, this doesn't make any sense. How does reducing or eliminating parking minimums make us *more* like Bellevue? Bellevue is a far more car-dominated city than Seattle; it currently maintains parking minimum requirements well in excess of what Seattle requires (1.2 spaces per studio/1 bedroom, 1.6 spaces per 2 bedroom, 1.8 per three bedroom). I can't for the life of me see how moving away from a car-subsidizing, car-dominated city makes more like Bellevue. Moving away from parking minimums distinguishes us further from Bellevue, obviously.

No parking requirements just means fatter profit margins. I guarantee you the savings passed on to renters would be rather negligible.

This has been proven incorrect many, many times through research by urban planning scholars, who I expect to be told are all somehow under the sway of the all-powerful developer lobby (here's another example from LA). But forget all the evidence that you're wrong--you're presenting a fundamentally contradictory argument. On the one hand, we really really need parking spaces, because transit sux and street parking is scarce and we all need cars. On the other hand, we apparently are unwilling to pay any kind of premium for parking spaces.

The notion that reducing minimums will make no difference in cost only makes sense if renters and buyers have no agency whatsoever. But we know that's not true--we know that they don't just pay whatever they're asked. They shop around, and they pay more for stuff they want and less for stuff they don't. They pay more for places with pools and decks and gyms, they pay more for places in the best school district, they pay more for a walkable location, etc etc. I'm sure developers/landlords would love to charge as much for a building with no gym and pool as they do for a similar building with one, but they can't and don't, because renters still have some agency in the transaction. You're asking us to believe that even though car ownership is really really important, that's the one amenity--the one thing people want--that is exempt from this basic fact about the housing market. You've identified no plausible reason why that might be the case.

@38 I don't have time to read your study but it certainly seems very dubious that a building with parking can get away with charging more for an apartment that is the same as the one next door in the building without parking, assuming the parking is not included in the rent. Rent prices are determined by what the market will bear.

In any case you are being somewhat disingenuous. It is perfectly clear that doing away with parking requirements is a huge giveaway to developers. And by 'morphing into Bellevue' I'm not referring to Bellevue's parking requirements vs. those in Seattle. I think that is perfectly clear. Developers are wrecking neighborhoods and putting up endless crappy town homes and condo-retail complexes because government officials here have been falling all over themselves to answer to their every whim, spinning every giveaway as being all about density, environmentalism and such.
Prof. Shoup study is fascinating and has many urban planners and free marketers excited. I actually hate driving and my 12 yo car which has 60k mileage reflects this. I think many of us who commute and don't get free ORCA passes aren't jumping up and down for joy because the practicality of not using a car to get to/from places isn't that easy in this town. Buses and trains aren't on schedule and not frequent enough. However, workday, appointment, and childcare demand on time punch in. Work for some of us isn't confined to one cubicle, but all over this city and beyond. Considering all the myriads of stuff daily life entails from grocery shopping, picking up 2x4s or soaker hose for the pea patch or kids from schools/day care, schlepping them and older grandparents to appointments all in the expanse of a day means many of us still require a car to get around. I also schlep my careless friends around because they like to go hiking or IKEA and guess what, those with cars drive people who don't have cars and all their stuff around.

The latest parking app and metering schedule are smart. Car2go is an option and approved by the city without the parking penalty though not for everybody such as people with small children and poor people without credit. Sidewalks are another highly valued commodity and wish the city would finish putting them in and repair the broken ones. Same goes for keeping downtown sidewalks opened during construction. More school buses would be awesome. More schools. More large parks and play fields so people aren't driving all over the place for practice and game would add to livability. Not using a car would be more possible if we had a subway and bus system like NYC or DC. But as you know, even DC much touted subway system is undergoing a meltdown from lack of upgrades and maintenance over the years.

I can go on, but it's stuff like this which bogs us down. It may make us sound petty, heartless, and awful not to embrace all the good intentions and brilliant things in HALA. HALA people didn't ask us for input, but will ask us for more tax money and public resources to support their ideas. People might be more amenable if they see infrastructure fees/taxes are spread to developers and builders who are benefiting from much of this boom, not to mention the subsidies and loopholes they've enjoyed up to now.
Rent prices are determined by what the market will bear.

Exactly! "The Market" is actually a bunch of consumers who want things and are willing to pay for them. That's why "the market" (that is, us--people who want stuff) will pay more for places with fancy appliances, granite countertops, walkable locations, and, yes, convenient on-site parking. I can't fathom why you think the fact that "rents are determined by what the market will bear" would cut in the other direction.
Marcie, if the convenience of a car and a place to store it is important to you, there's nothing in the HALA proposal that takes that away from you. You can simply limit your search to places that provide parking--most apartments do, after all, and that's not going to change any time soon. What I don't understand is why you think it's so important to make it illegal to construct and apartment for people who don't want car storage, and don't want to pay for it. I accept your preferences, the argument you make seems reasonable enough for you. Why do you think designing apartments for people who don't want or need a car, be illegal? Somewhere between 20-25% of apartment dwellers in this city don't have cars, after all.

You're correct, of course, that some proposals in the HALA document will require tax revenue. This isn't one of them, though, so I'm not sure how that particular point is relevant.
@41 Hmm, well let's say you have a carless couple looking for an apartment. Two buildings right next to each other, one with a parking garage one without. You (and apparently your study) are asserting that the identical apartment in the building with the garage will be more because of the cost of subsidizing the parking for the residents with cars. I find this to be highly dubious and it appears to be based on the assumption that all landlords are making razor slim profits. In this town that is almost certainly very wrong. So really what we end up with here is that removing parking requirements is all about developers making fatter profits.
I find this to be highly dubious and it appears to be based on the assumption that all landlords are making razor slim profits

It implies nothing of the sort. Why do you think it does?
To spell it out: there's rather obviously a shortage of housing, which means landlords can charge a lot of money for apartments. Let's say about 2 grand for a standard apartment is what the market will presently bear.

Some people in this market can barely afford the 2K, if at all, but others, who want nice things, are willing to pay a little more for nice/convenient things. So you can get a little more than the 2K for a basic apartment--nice amenities like in unit laundry, an exercise room, or a reserved parking space.

None of the above story tells us anything at all about profit margins--they could be razor thin, or they could be sky-high.

As an aside, the fixation of developers you demonstrate, so commonplace among anti-housing types in this city, causes us to take our eye off the ball and overlook the group of rich people who really make out like bandits in these circumstances--the landowners. Because they happen to own of the rare zoned for development pieces of land in the city, they make truckloads of money doing nothing at all. This raises the cost of land the developers must buy, which eats into their profit margin to a not inconsiderable extent. If I'm in charge of the revolution, the first up against the wall (after the bankers, natch) would be the big landowners. The developers may do all manner of obnoxious things, but at their core they are doing something useful, as we do need places to live. They'd have to wait their turn.
Well go with the grand bargain number then. 6,000 units without parking. The other units will be going at whatever the market rate will bear anyway so builders can add what they want- gym, pool, jetted tub, marble countertop, and still keep the parking requirement as is. Requiring new buyers and renters to go without car means the city need to have the infrastructure in place so people can get around easily. It's not there. Yet. Many folks moving into these new builts have cars. Apodment dwellers have cars. Like many of us, they don't drive their cars daily, but they have them and I see them driving around. Tent city dwellers have cars. RVs and car dwellers are seen all over and well tolerated in this city.

Get developers and builders to help pay impact fees to help offset all the infrastructure needed and very expensive to build and maintain. They are powerful and making big decisions which affect us all. They can inspire us to be better environmentalists by living the carless, no parking needed lifestyle.

Besides, right now, you need parking for all those who are actually constructing these new duplexes/triplexes, condos, tunnel, amazon towers anyway. They aren't exactly walking, biking, and busing to work judging by all their trucks and cars parked all over.
Requiring new buyers and renters to go without car

Again, this is pure fantasy. No one is suggesting any such thing, and nothing in the HALA document could possibly lead to such an outcome in the short or medium term. The only way we could create such a scenario would be to destroy or convert existing parking on completed units. Even in the highly unlikely event that virtually all developments allowed to go without parking choose to do so, at no point will new developments be the only thing available on the market. There's always turnover and the vast majority of the existing rental stock has off-street parking. Even if new development without parking takes off a tremendous rate, the vast majority of the rental stock will come with an attached parking lot for decades to come.

Also, anyone who knows anything about metro funding knows that we it's not structured for the model you suggest--build brilliant transit before the demand, then allow development. We pay for metro primarily with taxes, and we're limited by statute in how much we can raise those tax rates. To get Metro more money for better service, we need more people paying taxes--that means adding density first, then transit improvements. It would be neat to do it your way, but we don't live in an environment where that's a possible path to take.