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6 Ideas For Solving the Arts District's Major Parking Problem

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Arts District gentrification is out of control--we know this, the rents are crazy high, hip new businesses move in every day, it might be getting a freaking Soho House--but the parking situation in the old industrial area is not at all up to accommodating a happening neighborhood. (The population is still small enough that businesses have to rely on outsiders.) Almost no parking's been added in the recent boom, "Trucks cause traffic jams and put wear on the roads. The area has been a popular filming spot since the 1980s, and the vehicle caravan that accompanies a shoot can block a street and its parking spaces for an entire day," according to the LA Times. There's a DASH/Gold Line stop nearby in Little Tokyo, but not even bus lines go directly to the AD--a Regional Connector rail stop won't arrive until about 2020 (at First and Central). Meanwhile the neighborhood is scrambling to come up with alternatives; here's what they've got:

-- Some residents like the idea of a north-south bus line on Santa Fe or Alameda.
-- Zinc Cafe, opening soon at Willow and Mateo, will have free valet but absolutely no self-parking. (While that's good for Zinc's parking problem, it's probably not so good for everyone else's.)
-- A parking garage would help, "but wouldn't match the scale of the area's low-slung buildings," and no one's been willing to build underground.
-- American Apparel (at nearby Alameda Square on the edge of the AD and the Industrial District) started offering free valet to its employees earlier this summer. They also give employees discounted Metro cards and sometimes bikes to get to and from Union Station.
-- Alameda Square owner Evoq is now thinking about building a parking garage for tenants.
-- Some businesses have proposed an Arts District tram to run down to Little Tokyo and around Downtown.
· Parking, transit fail to keep pace with up-and-coming Arts District [LAT]
· Oh God, is the Arts District Going to Be the Next Meatpacking? [Curbed LA]