With Evanston aldermen set to discuss two new planned developments tonight, city staff surveyed developers of recently completed projects and in two out of three cases were told they have parking spaces left over.

  • 1717 Ridge Ave. has 1.14 spaces per unit and is only using 0.94 spaces per unit.
  • Central Station at 1700-1722 Central St., with 1.01 spaces per unit, is using all of its spaces.
  • AMLI Evanston at 631-749 Chicago Ave., has 1.44 spaces per unit and is only using 1.09 spaces per unit.

The E2 development at 1890 Maple Ave. is still leasing up and officials there said it was too early to tell what their parking utilization rate will be.

An earlier study of parking utilization at several other developments — including The Reserve at 1930 Ridge Ave., Optima Horizons at 800 Elgin Road, Optima Views at 1720 Maple Ave. and Optima Towers at 1580 Sherman Ave. — indicated they had parking ratios ranging from 0.9 to 1.05 vehicles per unit.

A complaint that new developments won’t meet the parking needs of their residents and will therefore increase demand for nearby on-street parking has been one of the arguments opponents have made to just about all new development projects in Evanston.

The city staff survey doesn’t address the mix of unit sizes in each development.

Of the two new developments up for review tonight, the one at 1571 Maple Ave. calls for a parking ratio of 1.12 spaces per unit, although most parking for it would be nearly a quarter mile away from the building.

The other project, at 1620 Central St., calls for a parking ratio of 1.15 spaces per unit, with all of its parking on site.

Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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