South Bellevue Parking Mitigation
Residents in south Bellevue neighborhoods, particularly Enatai, have expressed concerns to the city about spillover parking (also commonly called “hide and ride” parking) occurring once the South Bellevue Park and Ride closes due to East Link light rail construction.
Spillover parking typically occurs when commuters seek convenient, alternate parking options to access heavily-traveled bus routes. Residents are concerned that this will occur following the Park and Ride closure, particularly by commuters who ride Sound Transit’s route ST550 which is a popular route from the South Bellevue Park and Ride. Additionally, there is concern that other ST 550 bus stops along Bellevue Way will entice on-street parking within neighborhoods.
The South Bellevue Park and Ride currently provides 519 parking stalls for ST 550, 555, 556, 560 and Metro 241, 249, and 981 commuters and is most often at capacity on weekdays. With such a high volume of riders using the Park and Ride, the relatively car-free streets of Enatai could prove to be an attractive parking option for these riders once the Park and Ride closes.
The city is prepared to address spillover parking concerns as a result of the closure through its Residential Parking Management Program. The program addresses neighborhood concerns with non-resident vehicles parked in neighborhoods adjacent to businesses, schools and other public facilities. Included in this program is the Residential Parking Zone (RPZ) program that establishes an area—by city ordinance—to restrict non-residential parking on neighborhood streets. Residents and their guests are exempt from the restrictions if they are parking legally and displaying a RPZ permit issued by the City.
As a proactive measure, one possible RPZ (Zone 17) has been designated in the Enatai neighborhood.
Potential for Commuter Parking Occurring in the Enatai Neighborhood
The city has taken proactive steps to create the legal framework that will allow for the implementation of a residential parking zone in the Enatai neighborhood on streets near the Park and Ride should spillover parking meet minimum stated guidelines and is supported by the community in the form of a ballot. The framework was approved through the adoption of Ordinance 6320 in November 2016. Creating this legal framework upfront will ultimately reduce the total time it takes to install parking restrictions, should they be deemed needed and are supported.
Community support is needed because residential parking zones, while discouraging spillover parking, does require the installation of signs and for residents to procure parking permits if parking on the street, which may not be welcomed by residents.
Upon closure of the Park and Ride (date to be determined) city staff will periodically review the designated RPZ streets to determine whether the street meets guidelines for RPZ implementation (percent of cars parked on the street, percent of those cars being non-resident). If at any point residents observe a high number of cars parked on neighborhood streets, please contact: John Murphy, Neighborhood Traffic Safety Services, at firstname.lastname@example.org, 425-452-6967.
If parking does meet guidelines, a ballot will be sent to those homeowners on the streets where guidelines are met to vote to approve the RPZ restriction. If approved through community balloting, signs will be installed and permits distributed.
Commuter Parking Near Other Bus Stops along Bellevue Way
There are three other bus stops along Bellevue Way and south of downtown Bellevue that could attract commuter parking (SE 16th St, SE 10th/11 Streets, and SE 3rd St). If spillover parking occurs, these areas will be reviewed on an as-needed basis much like any other parking concerns in the city.
Neighborhood streets adjacent to the other ST 550 bus stops south of downtown Bellevue are not being ordinanced ahead of the Park and Ride closure to ensure parking restrictions are implemented when/where they are needed
If at any point you think there is a high number of cars parked on your street, please contact: John Murphy, email@example.com, 425-452-6967.
Frequently asked questions about the South Bellevue Park and Ride closure address when the Park and Ride will close and where to park during the closure.