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Common Parking and Transportation Terms

Common Parking Terms (alphabetical):

Angle Parking (also Back-in Angle Parking and Head In Angle Parking) - Refers to cars parking at an angle to the curb in space clearly marked for such use. Angle Parking can increase the parking supply as much as 50% over parallel parking, depending on the location of driveways and other objects along the street or curb, and the angle of the spaces. Angle parking can make the street less desirable for pedestrians and wheelchair-users because of cars overhanging the sidewalk and making it narrower, and can affect visibility for residents and businesses. Requests for installing Angle Parking are reviewed for safety and other considerations. For more information call (206) 684-ROAD (7623).

Load Zone - A type of on-street space usually found in front of (or near) businesses and apartment buildings that allows short-term use (such as 3 minutes or 30 minutes) for loading and unloading (such as to drop off or pick-up passengers). Parking is not allowed in load zones, and violation of the terms of the load zone puts you at risk of a ticket, or in some cases, being towed.

Long-term Parking - Parking spaces that can be used for all-day parking (6 hours or more). Typically residents and employees use long-term parking to park their car while they are at home overnight, or while at work. Long-term parking spaces often serve fewer vehicles each day than short-term spaces.

Lot-sharing Agreement - An agreement between the owner of a parking facility (usually a privately-owned or pay lot, or the parking garage of an institution such as a hospital or business) and one of more clients (such as a business, a church, or a community organization) that allows the client to use the parking facility under certain terms. For instance, a church may have a lot-sharing agreement with a nearby hospital that church-goers may park in the hospital lot on Sunday mornings without risk of being ticketed or towed. Many times the client pays a fee to the owner of the parking facility as part of the agreement.

On-Street Parking - Refers to all parking on/along the curb of streets whether metered or restricted by time or use.

Off-Street Parking - Refers to all parking not on/along the curb of streets, whether in a private lot, public lot, business parking lot, homeowner's driveway, etc.

Parallel Parking - Refers to parking alongside or "parallel" to the curb - this is the most common type of on-street parking.

RPZ (Restricted Parking Zone) - An area on-street parking where people without the appropriate zone permit on their vehicle are restricted in the amount time they can park (such as 2 hours or 4 hours) during certain times of day (such as 6:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.). RPZs are numbered, such as "Zone 7", and residents on the streets where the RPZ signs are located are eligible to obtain a zone permit sticker for their vehicle(s) for a small fee. Resident vehicles without a permit are subject to time restrictions for parking that are posted on the RPZ signs. RPZs are commonly found in neighborhoods where there is sufficient competition for on-street parking (between residents, employees, customers, commuters, etc.) that residents are experiencing great difficulty in finding parking. A City ordinance and resolution governs under what conditions an RPZ may be set up in a neighborhood.

Restricted Parking/ Regulated Parking - A type of on-street parking where people are restricted in the amount of time they can park (such as 30 minutes, 2 hours etc.) during certain times of day (such as 7:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.). Restricted or regulated parking applies to everyone equally.

Shared Parking - Privately-owned parking spaces or lots that can be used to serve 2 or more individual land uses without conflict. For example, a parking facility can be used by office employees during the day, and by people going to a nearby theater at night. These different but non-conflicting uses may be spelled out as part of a lot-sharing agreement between the businesses/clients involved and the owner of the parking spaces or lots.

Short-term Parking - Parking spaces that are restricted to short time limits (usually 2 hours or less). Restricted or regulated parking and parking meters are common examples of short-term parking. Typically short-term parking is used near businesses to both provide parking for customers while also encouraging a turn-over so that several people can use a parking space every few hours.

Stalls - A parking space (of any sort). Another name for a parking space.

Common Transportation Terms (alphabetical):

Car Sharing - A practice where people become members in an organization that owns a variety of cars, which members can then use under the terms of their membership. Zipcar (206-682-0107 in Seattle, or is an example of a local car-sharing club. They have dozens of cars in different neighborhoods with their own reserved parking spaces which members use through a reservation system. Typically the shared car(s) is one of several modes of transportation such as busing, biking, or walking which members use to get to where they need to go.

CTR (Commute Trip Reduction) - A practice which encourages employees and employers to work together to find ways that allow employees to get to and from work without driving alone (as an SOV trip). There are many tools which can be used to encourage non-SOV trips such as carpools and vanpools, special parking spaces for carpools and vanpools, reduced-cost transit passes, car-sharing, and secure bicycle parking and shower facilities for those who bike or walk.

PEO (Parking Enforcement Officer) - A civilian employee who works within the Seattle Police Department. PEOs enforce the parking ordinances established by the City. They can be seen doing their enforcement in a 3-wheel specially-designed vehicle, a regular 4-wheel vehicle, or by walking an area. Citations are issued using a handheld computer system.

SOV (Single-Occupant Vehicle) - A private vehicle (car, truck, or sport utility vehicle, etc.) with only 1 person (the driver) in it.

TDM (Transportation Demand Management) - A practice that reduces the demand placed on a transportation network of a neighborhood, city, or region. Reducing the demand is often easier and less expensive than increasing the capacity or structure of the network (i.e., than building more roads). TDM programs encourage people to get to where they need to go, but to consider modes of transportation other than driving alone (as an SOV trip), or to make trips during non-peak times (i. e., times other than rush hour). Other modes that are encouraged commonly include carpooling, vanpooling, busing and transit, car-sharing, bicycling, and walking. TDM is also called "Transportation Conservation."

Transit - Refers to all mass transportation systems such as buses, light rail, commuter rail, and monorail.

(developed March 17, 2003)

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