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Image for UC San Diego Parking Operations Study

Since it was established in 1960, the University of California San Diego (UCSD) has evolved from a suburban campus into a dense, urban environment that is one of the top 15 research universities in the world. With this robust growth, providing adequate parking to meet the needs of students, visitors, faculty and staff has become a challenge. The University turned to the team of Fehr and Peers and Watry Design, Inc. to assess the existing parking supply and operations,  develop strategies to improve and maximize efficiency of parking on campus and provide a parking financial analysis to investigate options for increasing parking revenue. 

After conducting surveys and gathering input from the community, the project team determined that available parking spaces are difficult to find due to their geographic distribution and lack of real-time information on location and permit types.  As the University anticipates a continued increase in enrollment coupled with development projects that will reduce the parking supply while increasing demand, the challenge for drivers to find a parking space is expected to increase. 

To maximize efficiency of the existing parking system and minimize the number of future spaces needed to accommodate the University's continued growth, the project team recommended a number of short and long term  strategies, including enhancing wayfinding, retrofitting existing lots and parking structures with parking guidance systems, consolidating permit types, providing a mobile app for payment and space availability, and identifying locations for future parking structures. 

The goal of the financial analysis was to investigate options recognizing not only current projections that call for increasing operating costs, but also future investments in parking infrastructure over a 5-year planning horizon. Three different revenue enhancement scenarios were analyzed, each compared with a baseline defined by parking pricing and operations policies currently in place.