Research Team: PI: Katelyn Stangl Team:
About this project:
Parking minimums have been criticized for requiring developers to build more parking than they would without regulation; however, to date, few studies have explored why there might be variation in how much parking is built or why developers might willingly build parking above the minimums. To answer these questions, I assembled a sample of residential and mixed-use developments approved for construction in Los Angeles between 2013 and 2018 and analyzed if any development or neighborhood characteristics predicted parking above the minimum. I also interviewed 11 developers and real-estate professionals about parking minimums. I found that parking minimums are binding except when they are smallest: developments generally provided about as much parking as they were required to do even as the amount of parking they were required to provide decreased. Only developments with the largest parking minimum reductions built significantly more parking than required. Additionally, developments were more likely to provide extra parking when located in denser neighborhoods where people are least likely to drive and most likely to travel by public transit or by foot. These neighborhoods have less preexisting parking, and developers are likely incentivized to capitalize on this shortage to build more parking. Finally, I found that market-rate developers build more parking in response to perceived market demand, pressure from financial lenders, and neighborhood opposition. Affordable housing developers, however, try to minimize the amount of parking built to ensure financial efficiency and build less parking overall.