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Seattle City Council to vote on rules to allow for apartments, condos without parking

Seattle City Council plans to vote Monday on controversial rules that would allow new apartments and condos to be built without parking spaces. (KOMO News)

SEATTLE -- All around Seattle are signs of growth, and with it comes parking pains.

Seattle City Council plans to vote Monday on controversial rules that would allow new apartments and condos to be built without parking spaces. It would also allow current building owners to rent out excess parking spots.

Many people like Enaoko Takeda have given up on owning a car.

"My apartment charged $150 a month (for parking)," Takeda said. "I don't think it's worth having a car."

A new proposal would allow developers to build new apartment buildings without any parking spaces. Some say that seems like a stretch.

Brielle Goodman drives to work. She struggles with finding parking around Seattle when she's out and about.

"I have to circle around the block and drive around for at least 20 minutes just looking for a parking spot," Goodman said. "So to have an entire apartment complex not have parking and have everyone try to park on the street, that would be insane."

The proposed changes to parking rules would require landlords to charge separately for a parking space, giving tenants the option to opt out.

Supporters believe the changes will make it cheaper to build more affordable housing and move the City of Seattle away from cars. But many say otherwise.

"It's simply a bad idea," Irene Wall with the neighborhood group Livable Phinney said. "It is unrealistic."

Livable Phinney opposes the proposed changes.

Phinney Flats, a proposed 55 unit complex going up on 67th Avenue Greenwood Avenue North, won't have parking.

Wall says City Council needs to consider the facts.

"What they have told us in their own environmental reports is that at least 30 to 35 percent of people who live in these apartment buildings that have no parking have cars and need to park them," Wall said.

Seattle City councilmember Rob Johnson is the sponsor of the proposal. He's said that off-street parking requirements have contributed to a car-centric city.



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