Mitigating parking problems in residential areas by more residents participating in the wall break-down project
After the ‘Green Parking Master Plan' was announced on July 19, 2003 as the Mayoral Decree (No. 507), a project task force was formed and designated as the ‘green parking standard model’ to break down walls to build parking spaces. A pilot project was executed with one test area in each municipality until May 2004.
The target areas were selected as those having the most prevalent illegal parking problems because of the shortage of parking spaces and having a road width of less than 5.5m that made it difficult for vehicles to pass through when the cars were parked on the road. The city government granted a subsidy to the residents who would tear down a gate or wall to install a parking space.
Although the city and municipal governments carried out an extensive PR campaign for the 'My Parking Space at My House’ program, the response was not very favorable in the beginning. The government then prepared the 'Wall Breakdown Project Execution Manual' and explained the program by visiting each household. Thus, more and more residents became aware of the program, and events such as ‘the photo exhibition of the parking spaces constructed’ resulted from the program and caught further attention from the residents. As the result, 41,752 parking spaces were constructed by breaking down the walls of 21,652 houses at the cost of $291 million USD over the course of 8 years since 2004.
Considering that it cost approximately $43,000 USD per parking space in the public parking lots in residential areas, the green parking program only cost $7,000 USD per parking space. Furthermore, it helped to secure the low cost parking spaces mitigating the parking problem in the residential areas within a short period of time.
As the result, illegal parking on the roads in residential areas is gradually disappearing and the streets are becoming safer for children, senior citizens and disabled pedestrian traffic.
City government providing subsidies to improve parking environment
To encourage more residents to participate in the green parking program, the city government provided a subsidy of up to $15,000 USD ($7,000 for a space and an additional $8,000 for the second space). As more and more residents broke down their walls to build parking spaces, there are fewer cars illegally parked on the street and less conflict among the neighbors to obtain parking spaces, transforming the community back to the friendlier environment it used to be.
Restoration of village community and creation of green rest areas
According to a survey of 500 residents participated in the wall breakdown program, those satisfied with the program increased from 68% in 2007 to 86.6% in 2009. It was indicated that the program helped instill positive feelings among the residents by resolving parking problems and encouraging the residents to cooperate in the program to create a more friendly community.
To execute the green parking project, the ‘Residents Steering Committee’ consisted of the Green Mothers Association, School Operating Committee, communitee leaders, district representatives and residents in each municipality on July 1, 2004. The committee of around 10 members gathered public opinions on breaking down walls, building access paths, and creating beautiful neighborhoods, while also encouraged the residents to participate in the program, inspect the sites, and submit suggestions.
The green parking program that began in 2004 has now reached an established phase. By tearing down the walls, the residents were able to create not only parking spaces, but also flower gardens and 109,913m of access roads to restore the community and establish green rest areas.