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Pay Station Neighborhoods: Chinatown/International District

Updated September 27, 2006

The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) will be expanding both on-street paid parking and time-limit signs in the Chinatown/International District this November. On-street parking throughout the neighborhood is often full. Paid on-street parking can encourage area employees and residents who wish to park for longer durations to more appropriately park in off-street lots, thereby opening up spaces in the business district for customers and visitors.

This letter and map describe the areas where the paid parking and time-limit signs will be installed. The new expansion will:

  • Install approximately 15 pay stations on nine blocks where current 2-hour signs are not working well to create sufficient turnover to provide customer parking
  • Install 2-hour time limit signs on one and a half blocks to create turnover for surrounding businesses and community services
  • Continue phased implementation of paid parking in the C/ID and allow SDOT to monitor the effectiveness of the changes
  • Leave some areas of the neighborhood's on-street parking unrestricted to accommodate neighborhood residents

Beginning in summer 2005, SDOT launched a parking study and public outreach process to prepare the Chinatown/International District for the conversion of parking meters to pay stations, and to gather community input about locations where paid parking could improve parking turnover for business customers. In June 2005, SDOT conducted an on-street parking study in the neighborhood. The results of the study were used in conjunction with community comments to determine if and where paid parking should be expanded.

The Seattle Department of Transportation replaced the aging single-space meters in the Chinatown/International District with parking pay stations in early 2006. To gather additional community comments, SDOT worked with the International District Housing Alliance's Wilderness Inner-City Leadership Development (WILD) Youth Program to conduct door-to-door outreach to neighborhood businesses and residents. The interns shared information about parking pay stations, and gathered information on different ways in which the community would be impacted by parking changes. (Click here for information in Chinese).

Pay station instruction cards are available in English, Chinese and Vietnamese. For more information about pay stations in the Chinatown/International District, please contact Meghan Shepard at (206) 684-4208 or

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