[Update: This item was supposed to happen at the last work session, but it got bumped. It is the first item on the agenda for Monday, February 9th, 10 am at City Hall].
The top priority for Walkable West Palm Beach in 2015 is to implement the Jeff Speck study. Fern Street is the first substantial project moving forward that includes recommendations from the Speck study. We need your help to get it moving. Below is the explanation and the action step to take to help.
In order to move the project forward, angled parking spaces need to be converted to parallel parking spaces in order to fit a bike lane or a cycle track (it’s not clear whether there is room for a proper cycle track) on the street. Without conversion of angled parking spots to parallel, there is no room for a bike facility and the most this street will receive is sharrows. This would involve the loss of some of the angle parking spaces on Fern. However, with the implementation of the full Speck study, there are many more parking spaces to be gained in the downtown, resulting in a net addition of around 500 parking spaces total.
The parking administration is not happy about losing some spaces on Fern Street and pushing against the project. We need you to speak up and write the commissioners letting them know you support converting parking spaces on Fern to parallel spaces. Suggested verbiage, please tailor as you see fit:
I support the Jeff Speck study. I support converting parking spaces on Fern to parallel spaces in order to implement a better, more walkable and bike friendly Fern Street to connect from Tri Rail transit hub, to Cityplace and All Aboard Florida, to the water. Any loss of parking on Fern Street is negligible and the downtown will see a net increase of almost 500 spaces total. Please allow planning staff to see this project through.
The commission work session meeting takes place at 10:00 am Monday, February 9th at the City Hall. It is open to the public and may or may not include public comment. Come if you can, and make sure to write the commission and Mayor.
Jeff Speck Downtown WPB Walkability Study [see page 56 for Fern Street]
Ideas for Fern Street/Evernia/Datura from Baron Haussmann