Ann Arbor Parking Data Gets Finer-Grained

At its regular monthly meeting on July 6, 2011, the Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority board had no resolutions on its agenda requiring votes, except for the cancellation of its August meeting. (Cancellation of that meeting is an annual ritual.)

However, the meeting did include the regular monthly parking report – a comparison of the most recent month’s available data, compared with the same month a year ago. That regular parking report may be somewhat more detailed in the future. For the July board meeting, however, the board received its standard report.

Total public parking revenues for May 2011 were $1,218,442, based on permit holder fees plus fees paid by 170,471 hourly parkers in structures. That’s an increase from May 2010, which had $1,145,740 in total revenues and 169,466 hourly parkers.

Percentage-wise that’s a 6.35% increase in revenue and a 0.59% increase in the number of hourly parkers, with a total system parking space inventory of 19 additional spaces: 7,149 in May 2011 compared with 7,130 in May 2010.

The board has recognized for some time that this kind of measure for parking demand is somewhat coarse. The number of hourly parkers gives some insight, as does the total revenue, but these data do not provide a direct measure of how much of the system’s capacity is being used.

At the DDA board’s bricks and money committee meeting on Wednesday, June 29, Joe Morehouse – deputy director of the DDA – presented committee members with data showing the percentage of total parking hours sold for parking structures, with 100% corresponding to the (practically impossible) scenario of every spot in every space filled with a car 24/6 (structures are free on Sunday) and no time lost when one car pulls out and another pulls in. Like the standard parking report, the comparison for May 2011 against May 2011 using that metric also showed an increase in demand: 33.22% in May 2010 compared to 34.94% in May 2011. [Ann Arbor public parking efficiency chart]

This brief was filed from the DDA offices at 150 S. Fifth Ave., where the DDA board meets. A more detail report of the meeting will follow: [link]