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Sunday, July 25, 2010

Parking European Style

Parking is a huge problem in many parts of Los Angeles (including here in the NoHo Arts District where it's nearly impossible to park) and as more and more bodies come here it will become an even bigger challenge.  At the same time goofy pols like former Clowncilman Mike Woo want developers to offer less parking thinking that will somehow solve the problem.  

"I want to create a parking crisis that will force people out of their cars.”
Mike Woo

Perhaps we can look to the Europeans for an answer.  Wohr Parking Systems has developed automatic parking systems (video) that shelve many more cars in a space than typical structures can. Such systems are in use around historic buildings where there is no room for parking lots.

Something LA should check out.

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Blogger Walter Moore said:

Another thing they do in Europe -- without the juke-box feature -- is simply to have big underground parking lots with parks on top.

Your car really doesn't need to have a view of anything when you're away from it. It's a great way to create usable, nice, public spaces, while providing PLENTY of parking.

July 25, 2010 9:45 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

As someone who purports to care about taxpayers, your blubbery self should know that this type of parking is hyper-expensive.

July 25, 2010 9:45 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Go away, Walter.

July 25, 2010 9:51 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

I grew up in a certain third-world country whose name I do not wish to remember. When I went back for a visit, I found that my old residential 'hood had become yuppified - the single-family houses converted into restaurants and shops. The plaza where I learned to ride a bicycle as a child has become an underground parking garage, serving all these businesses. But its surface was restored pretty much the way I remembered it. Even the old trees were replanted.

If a third-world country with a GNP about the same as that of Los Angeles county can do this, why can't a third-world city like LA do the same?

July 25, 2010 10:16 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Mayor Sam,

Can you please limit your posts to subjects that are at least .00001% likely to happen?

Stop wasting our time, and just go back to putting down Phil Jennerjahn, whose latest idea to stop pension problems is to "Sue the fuck out of the unions."

Phil can't articulate on what basis they should sue. No wonder he dropped out of law school, although I doubt he can prove he ever attended one.

July 25, 2010 10:22 PM  

Anonymous Alex Trebeck said:

Fat, Gay and Mexican.

July 25, 2010 11:19 PM  

Anonymous Sean Connery said:

Who is Trebeck's mother?

July 25, 2010 11:19 PM  

Anonymous Alex Trebeck said:

No that is not correct. Burt Reynolds?

July 25, 2010 11:20 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Commenters, be careful not to criticize Mike Higby.

Every time he is accused of being a racist, he responds "fuck you, I have a black in my family," thinking that because a RELATIVE married or adopted a black, that makes HIM not a racist.

You can expect the same lack of logic if you dare criticize this post.

July 25, 2010 11:20 PM  

Anonymous Burt Reynolds said:

Liberace at a taco bar?

July 25, 2010 11:20 PM  

Anonymous Alex Trebeck said:

No that is not correct and it must be in the form of a question.

July 25, 2010 11:21 PM  

Anonymous Dennis Miller said:

Who is Assembly Speaker John Perez?

July 25, 2010 11:22 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Mike Woo is an idiot and if Daddy did not own a bank Mike would be nothing. I cannot think of anyone more useless well except for Phil Jennerjahn. That's right let's plan for a million more people in LA by waiving any parking requirements. could you imagine that he was once on the city council?

July 26, 2010 6:50 AM  

Blogger Michael Higby said:

Walter that makes sense too but I think that if you have an area where you going to build parking where space is at a premium this type of system is interesting.

For the person who said anything about this being paid for by the taxpayers, it need not. Anyone developing would be very interested in something like this if it reduced the parking footprint allowing more space to build more income producing square footage.

July 26, 2010 8:25 AM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

Michael --

The poster at 10:16 saw the same kind of thing I've seen in France.

Underground construction is indeed more expensive than above-ground parking, but the value you add to the city lasts forever and, in my opinion, makes it worthwhile. This would be a great way to, in effect, provide dozens of "pocket parks" along main thoroughfares that people from adjoining neighborhoods could enjoy.

Plus, there is no better time than right now because: i) the revenues are there with Measure R and federal stimulus money; ii) real estate prices are dirt cheap due to the recession; and iii) these would be "shovel ready" projects that would put construction workers back to work, and doing something clearly valuable.

July 26, 2010 8:32 AM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

P.S. You're right, this particular system IS very interesting, and could greatly boost the capacity of any given parking lot.

I, for one, however, probably wouldn't trust it. I like parking the car and knowing where it's parking and knowing I could get it out. I can just imagine if the software or hardware in one of these systems gets messed up; how many weeks till you see your car again?

July 26, 2010 8:34 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Money talks...anyone have a ballpark on what this costs compared to the apx. $20K per space I've heard for a (union project) above grade parking structre?

July 26, 2010 9:42 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

We're already doing it here in the US. Check it out. Right in the San Fernando Valley -- http://www.autoparkit.com/

July 26, 2010 9:56 AM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

Here's an above-ground version in Austria:

July 26, 2010 10:49 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Walter, "Another thing they do in Europe" is have subways in every city which you join Ron Kaye in OPPOSING in favor of bus-only lanes on his blog a few days ago and would spend all the Measure R money on THAT. And parking lots.

And you've said so before. It's foolish to point to Europe's big parking structures as a model when they're places people park to hop onto mass transit in many cases. EVERY city relies on its subways.

In central London, with the fees imposed for driving INTO the city, even more take light rail to connect to a subway. With day parking over $30 if they must drive they often carpool or only do it on special occasions. You're such a Francophile, but where would Paris be without its metro? A city of car parks?

July 26, 2010 11:46 AM  

Blogger Michael Higby said:

Check out Auto-Parkit! They're doing it in Burbank and Valley Glen.

July 26, 2010 12:27 PM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

Actually, aside from Paris, I haven't seen any subways in France.

Plus, the cost of building subways in London way back whenever they did it is probably a fraction of the massive cost estimates for L.A.

Nor do they have earthquakes and hydrocarbons galore under the surface there.

Look, we have a great climate, and we used to have a great above-ground mass transit system. Why can't we have one again? We could even have open-air busses, like those tour busses.

If we had infinite time and money, sure, subways would be great. I've lived in cities that had them, and you better believe I used 'em.

But for the amount of time and money it would take to build one nine-mile stretch under Wilshire, you could be making life easier for everyone thoughout the city with bus rapid transit.

Research it and see what you think. As I recall, it's big in Colombia right now -- but I could have the wrong country. I just think it's the most cost-efficient way to get big numbers of people moving faster and with less congestion and pollution.

July 26, 2010 3:09 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Mike Woo is one of the biggest hypocrites on the City Planning Commission. While he wants everyone in this city to be miserable in buildings with little or no parking, the man held a commission retreat at the SCI-ARC, whose virtues according to him was ample of parking. It is on a Commission audio tape, if anyone cares to listen.

July 26, 2010 3:15 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

The thing that bugs me most about Mike Woo is that after he lost the race for Mayor he disappeared for the longest time. Despite all his faults, Tom LaBonge lost his first race for City Council but he stayed around and busted his butt around the district.

July 26, 2010 4:50 PM  

Blogger ubrayj02 said:

It's not goofy to under-park a building. If you do it in the right areas, it will reduce the overall demand for parking spaces.

Would you drive somewhere if there was no parking available? No. You'd find some other means or your wouldn't go at all.

That is what dropping the number of parkign spots required does - it forces people to do something else, and it also relieves the rest of us from subsidizing your car parking stall (which costs a ton)

July 26, 2010 4:50 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Folks, we have the worst planning commission on board. Just attend one of their meetings. It is about shoving density down your throats and of course with no parking. And please Walter Moore unless you truly are an urban planner, don't offer your opinions on what they do in France. This is not Paris.

July 26, 2010 5:33 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Mike Woo is an embarrassment to the Mayor and should be drummed out of the City "Planning" Commission. He wants everyone else to take transit so he can drive around town. Hypocrite.

July 26, 2010 5:37 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

4:50: AT LEAST Mike Woo "disappeared for a long time" after he lost. Walter Moore PROMISED TO DISAPPEAR and move to France, but he's still around, blogging moore than ever, everywhere.

That's ONE thing Woo got right, but too bad he didn't stay disappeared.

It's idiotic to intentionally make traffic so horrendous people will be forced to ride buses (or bikes, like Ubray who chimes in, supporting Woo). You can't force people ONTO mass transit that doesn't yet exist. Walter's idea of an army of buses crowding the streets more, instead of subways or light rail, is dumb. The idea that subways are unsafe in L A has been proven false - the methane gas issue was a smokescreen for various ethnic and neighborhood groups in WLA to get Zev to scotch it. With Eastside Latinos joining in, with their reverse racism.

I'll bet Walter hasn't attended the numerous MTA presentations on the proposed subway or spoken with the engineers. Just more cogs in the wheel of anything from these guys, including the Kaye Krowd.

To those who advocate monorail instead: I was in Vegas once when a sudden flash flood stopped the monorail literally in its tracks. Caught far from our hotel, which would normally have been a pleasant ride along the route, we had to slosh back without boots. No taxis available, it was like NYC in a sudden rainstorm. And THAT is just a tourist monorail, except for some employees. Just a short loop, though a long walk in the rain! Not a matter of missing work or getting home. It would not be feasible for LA commuting.

Meanwhile, the Expo Line is cool, bet Walter hasn't even checked that out. Checked out the video on this blog, at least? Walter's with the "no to everything Kaye Krowd," Zev though about the same age and with his record of past mistakes, at least sees the light.

July 26, 2010 5:53 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Ubray's thinking is skewed by being a single guy who can get around in the flats by bike. Woo's brilliant plan to kill parking and force moms with strollers or soccer moms needing to get to games or tutoring or anywhere, would make like such hell no one would raise kids in L A.
UNTIL there's an efficient, clean mass transit system for most of the city, a significant expansion of the existing subway and rail/Expo lines.

Even then it doesn't cover the hills, a huge area of the city - wonder if Ubray rides UPHILL a mile to the top of Mandeville or Laurel or ANY canyon? Hardly. And not with babies and kids and groceries in the rain.

It WOULD be good and long overdue, but won't happen for budget reasons, to have DASH buses in the hills for people to connect to bus lines downhill. Elderly people who don't drive anymore especially might manage to find doctors and get groceries etc. that way, who now rely on expensive cabs, order in and just plain are homebound.

I know elderly in my neighborhood this applies to, there are thousands. Also would be great for teens, community college kids could go to school without a car, anyone able to manage their chores by bus routes.

July 26, 2010 5:58 PM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

Why is it wrong to consider the experience of other countries?

That's one of the best sources of information, pro and con, on any public policy ideas you're evaluating. Examples:

1. Bullet trains -- Japan and France
2. Nuclear power -- Japan and France
3. Desalinization -- Australia and Israel
4. Bus rapid transit -- Columbia and United Kingdom (see urls below)
5. Wind power -- Germany



Look, I realize you staffers hate me, but you can still hate me while using the information I come up with to improve the city.

Or -- now here's a radical idea -- you could just let go of the hate and calmly and rationally weigh the costs and benefits of various alternative approaches.

You're still allowed to hate me even if you conclude B.R.T. is the most cost-efficient approach, you know!

July 26, 2010 8:26 PM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

P.S. Nice ageism! And "this isn't Paris," but you rely on your experience on a tram in Vegas. So this IS Vegas then, right? Or are you just so full of rage and hate that you can't cobble together a consistent argument?

July 26, 2010 8:29 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:



"West Valley Dave" and that type LUV him, the "Greasy Tony" crowd, THE REST OF US ARE ASHAMED TO HAVE HIM PART OF CLEAN SWEEP.

July 26, 2010 9:34 PM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

And there you have it, ladies and gentlemen: Staffers full of hate and name-calling, with zero ability to analyze public policies by comparing costs and benefits.

This is who we have at City Hall. This is why the city is a mess.

At least corrupt officials in other cities manage to handle the basics competently. We need a better class of crony.

July 26, 2010 9:46 PM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

Only a Villaraigosa staffer would attempt to inject race into a discussion of busses vs. subways vs. light rail. Good grief.

July 26, 2010 9:49 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Walter, please go away.

July 26, 2010 9:58 PM  

Blogger Joe B. said:

Wally, You can't separate the message from the messenger,
especially when the messenger rolls around in it like a pig in shit:


July 26, 2010 10:03 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Wow - that's cold, Joe B.

Walter is trying to offer intelligent discourse here and that's the response from someone affiliated with this blog?

What's your problem?

July 26, 2010 11:20 PM  

Blogger Joe B. said:

See my post at 10:03 for further details.

July 26, 2010 11:25 PM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

Dude, whatever it is in your life that fills you with so much hate, you need to deal with that.

You can't even have a civil discussion over, of all things, mass transportation.

Life is too short to walk around with that poison in your system. Examine your own life, and you may find why you feel this need to lash out with name-calling. But it's not good for you to lead the life of a hater.

July 27, 2010 7:25 AM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

P.S. How funny that you refer to a video showing pictures of billboards in Spanish has "pig shit!"

You can't argue with the pictures, can you? So instead you say it's "racist" to display the pictures. Brilliant! So now it's politically incorrect to display actual pictures of the way things really are? We must pretend instead that there are no signs in Spanish, is that it?

I've travelled a fair amount. This is the only place where I've seen so many signs posted in one country written in the language of another. That is a sign of how far gone illegal immigration is.

By any estimate, over 10% of Mexico's population lives in the United States. Can you point to any other place on earth where 10% of one country's population lives within the borders of another? Me, neither.

So hate all you want, but you can't change the facts, and you can't change what the camera records.

July 27, 2010 7:33 AM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Let's put Ubray in charge and put our economy out of its misery.

July 27, 2010 7:44 AM  

Anonymous g said:


July 27, 2010 4:35 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

I think that more Armenians live in Glendale than live in Armenia. That is not a joke. Oh, and that was a very racist video Walter. Quit trying to squirm out of your hate for the brown ones. And it's frigging Los Angeles, it's always hard a huge Hispanic populace.

July 27, 2010 5:29 PM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

And you say it is "racist" because?

The pictures depict the actual city. They are not altered. Is it "racist" to display actual pictures of real signs?

Is it "racist" to point out that illegal immigration is so far gone that big companies are dispensing with the English language altogether in their advertising?

Do you even know what the word "racist" means?

Your response, of course, will include no actual analysis or explanation. You will merely repeat your name-calling. Know why? 'Cause you got nothin'. You got nothin' but hate. The pictures are irrefutable. You can name-call all you want, but the pictures show what the pictures show.

So suck on that, as they say in the vernacular.

July 27, 2010 9:22 PM  

Blogger Joe B. said:

Walter, "DUDE" I'm not the person "hating" on a sign that you can't read. And it is obvious in your video that the signs are only a symptom of what is your base message.
You can back pedal and red herring this all you want but you can't argue with your racist video. I will remind people from time to time about this, lest someone actually takes you seriously.

July 27, 2010 10:03 PM  

Blogger Joe B. said:

Oh, and you might ought to check out some anger management classes before you explode.

July 27, 2010 10:15 PM  

Blogger ubrayj02 said:

Hey, I've got a kid, I shop like anyone else and I don't use a car for 90% of it!

Not being too familiar with Woo's proposal, I can't say that I support him or his proposal - but I do support "under-parking" in the right contexts.

It makes a lot of sense, in some places, to allow development to proceed without so much space (and money) given over to automobile storage.

July 28, 2010 3:50 AM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

As usual, unable to support your charge of "racism," you simply repeat it.

Brilliant. I bet you were really good at math, too:
"The answer is 500."
"How did you arrive at the number?"
"It's 500."
"Okay, but what makes you say it's 500." "The answer is 500."

July 28, 2010 7:49 PM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

P.S. "It's obvious that the answer is 500. Only a racist would say it's not 500."

July 28, 2010 7:51 PM  

Blogger Walter Moore said:

Joe, just out of curiosity, what does a man with your towering intellect and keen analytic skills do for a living? And what's your educational background? Plus, why don't you use sign your real name to your comments, instead of "B"?

July 28, 2010 7:52 PM  

Blogger Joe B. said:

Are you stalking me, Wally?

July 28, 2010 8:55 PM  

Anonymous Anonymous said:

Walter is creepy,in a bad way.

July 28, 2010 10:32 PM  

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