Why SANE opposes parking requirements in the new proposed IDZ Zoning changes

District 1 office asked the city to put together a task force to review inner-city infill zoning designation regulations and design because IDZ zoning "stresses" inner-city neighborhoods. 

IDZ zoning was introduced to help inner-city areas compete with areas on the fringe of our city that are less expensive for developers to build on, but cost the city much more to service and reduces green space beyond 1604. IDZ is directed at buildings and sites that are vacant and underutilized (not sites with existing homes).

The main issue that is concerning to SANE is that some vocal residents and the task force are calling for parking requirements with IDZ - the current standards do not require parking. This has trade offs - the biggest one being housing unit costs and number of housing units that a developer can build. Parking is expensive and reduces the number of housing units being built. It also has the potential to have a negative effect on people biking and walking, if parking is done as a large surface parking lot, and reduces the likelihood of rapid transit being effective. 

They also made some changes to mixed use zoning - most of them not a concern except for one. They are requiring any mixed use building on a corridor that comes within 20ft of a single family home on an adjacent street to be limited in height to that single family home. This would greatly restrict any development on corridors such as Fredericksburg Rd and Flores. 

To provide comments on the proposed IDZ changes, contact Logan Sparrow, Principal Planner
210.207.8691; more info on the IDZ changes can be found here: www.sanantonio.gov/DSD/Resources/Codes#233872882-infill-development-zone-idz

A great article recently came out in Strong Towns discussing the three major problems with parking requirements in cities - 1. they reduce the financial productivity and prosperity of a city, 2. they hinder small business owners, homeowners, developers and renters [We would add that it adds costs to housing], and 3. they fill our cities with empty, useless space [contributing to sprawl]

The full article:

3 Major Problems with Parking Minimums

In most cities, municipal services - be they fire protection, schools or streets - are paid for (in part) by property tax revenue, and the amount that every property is taxed is based on its assessed value. For parking lots, that value is very little.