In a Letter to the Editor on Dec. 17, Rita Vrhel claimed that according to a parking study prepared by Fehr & Peers for the Castilleja School, an underground parking garage of any size is unnecessary. First, I would like to thank Ms. Vrhel for finding a typographical error in the Fehr & Peers report. Alternative 4 should accurately be referred to as the Disbursed Circulation/Reduced Garage Alternative, not the no garage alternative. Alternative 4, with a reduced garage, would meet the City's requirement to provide 104 on-site parking spaces.
The analysis provided in Fehr & Peers' report was focused not on whether a garage was appropriate, but on whether a reduction in the number of parking spaces was appropriate. The word garage appears only three times in the report — twice in the title of Alternative 4 and once to explain the reason for the parking analysis: "To further protect trees and reduce the garage footprint of the project, the City Council asked staff and the Planning and Transportation Commission (PTC) to consider allowing a reduction of required parking based on the school's transportation demand management (TDM) program."
The Fehr & Peers report is an analysis of parking demand generated by different levels of student enrollment and whether Castilleja School's robust TDM program could, pursuant to a provision in the Municipal Code, reduce the required number of on-site parking below 104 spaces. The analysis considered a 9% and a 20% reduction in the on-site parking supply. Fehr & Peers made no representations about an underground garage, but instead provided an objective analysis of parking demand to respond to City decision makers' requests for information.
Robert Eckols, Principal, Fehr & Peers
Santa Clara Street, San Jose
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