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More parking under Boston Common?

Should the parking deck under Boston Common be expanded?   3 members have voted

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The Boston Convention Authority which owns/operates the parking deck under Boston Common wants to double the size of the deck to provide for parking downtown, in hopes of stimulating more economic development, but mainly because they want to revenue to subsidize their two convention centers.

The expansion would go just south of the existing deck at the corner of Charles and Boylston, and would (in theory) be cordinated with the Silver Line Phase III tunnel. Currently there are baseball fields at this loction which I would assume would get torn up for the two years needed to complete the project.

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The plan would face tons of hurdles from the state and even federal government, which would have to approve raising the number of spaces downtown.

Demand is being pushed by a strengthening economy and a limit on new parking spaces. Long ago, the US Environmental Protection Agency capped the number of parking spaces at Boston's downtown garages and lots at 35,303 to encourage commuters to use mass transportation.

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There could be more parking in Boston, but there are probably better locations than the Common. Preferably closer to mass transit, of course.

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Mass transit is great, but only when you can get to it. When I was driving into the city, I used to park there. I come form Worcester, so I had a it of a commute. The train was too infrequent to use for my type of job, and it was such a pain to have to get to alewife or Riverside that it was easier to drive all the way in. The commons actually was a pretty central location, you could pick up the Boylston T right there, or walk up to Park Street for the Red line. It was a decent walk to Downtown Crossing and even to Boylston st.

I do think that that will be a terribly difficult location - there's tons of stuff under there and who knows what they would find. I think it would be much wiser to build a garage somewhere more convenient, maybe something quickly accessible from the highway, but close to the T so you could park and take the T to work. Then again, I think this is less about convenience or service than about making money - the prices they get from parking in Boston are absurd!

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Then again, I think this is less about convenience or service than about making money - the prices they get from parking in Boston are absurd!

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Depending on what day it is I'll usually take the train up. But if I'm just going up for a Saturday, it's just 10 dollars all day on weekends at the Gov't Center garage. If you're going up with more than one person, gas and parking is actually cheaper than three people taking the T up and back.

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I was alone, so it made sense. If I'd had company, my strategy might have been different.

But hey, HOV is a good strategy too.

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