Federal planning requirements, passed down to local governments, have for a number of decades pursued what’s called “traffic calming” strategies aimed at making driving less desirable and pressuring citizens to abandon their personal vehicles. Often tied to qualifying for federal transportation funds, the federal efforts, have more recently, been elevated, but they have encountered a problem according to Axios Richmond: “While the city considers dramatically rolling back parking requirements to encourage denser, walkable neighborhoods, an unseen force is still quietly demanding developers build big parking decks.” Banks ! Banks almost always require developers to build a minimum number of parking spaces — often well above the requirements set by the city, complain centralized planners. Banks and developers are responding to consumer demands. They are also speculating that it will be a good investment, all the more so, because of the escalating emphasis of most municipal planning and regulators to eliminate the availability of on-street or public parking. The planners worry – even though it is not their money — that in ten years all those parking spaces will be a “financial albatross,” said Axios.


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