The University of Iowa

Downtown Waterloo Parking Study

Parking Meter
Academic Year 
2020-2021
College/Department 
Planning & Public Affairs
Project Partner 
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Students in the School of Planning & Public Affairs graduate course Transportation Demand Analysis completed a parking study for Waterloo’s downtown district.

The City of Waterloo, in coordination with the Iowa Initiative for Sustainable Communities (IISC), requested that a group from the University of Iowa look into the functionality of downtown Waterloo parking. As with many downtowns, a majority of parking is underutilized throughout the day, with the exception of a few peak hours and a few key locations. The purpose of this study was to assess existing conditions, during weekdays and weekends, to identify current and future parking needs specific to downtown Waterloo. An analysis of public and private on-street and off-street parking was done in order to provide the best assessment possible. In the assessment, strategies for maximizing existing parking spaces were considered and future growth in the downtown area was taken into account. The goal of this study was to develop best parking management practices tailored to the needs of downtown Waterloo, as well as examine how enhancements, for example conversions to outdoor dining space, to the current parking could benefit downtown businesses.