Mayor proposes raising Seattle Center parking rates by $15/day, $85/month

You could soon have to pay more for that day trip to Seattle Center. Mayor Jenny Durkan’s budget proposal calls for an increase in daily parking rates from $30/day to $45/day. It would also increase monthly rates from $140/month to $225/month.

“We just love coming up here taking the kids to the science center,” James Ervin told KIRO 7 on Tuesday after parking at the 5th Avenue garage. “So, I hope they don't raise the prices on this garage.”

The Ervin family makes the trip to Seattle Center from Rochester several times a year, and James says $15 more per day to park could alter future plans.

“That would be quite a financial impact,” he said. “I don't know if we'd be able to come quite as often.”

There are three city-owned Seattle Center parking garages that connect people to the Space Needle, MoPop, Pacific Science Center and more. The new rates would be the maximum that can be charged, but rates would vary depending on demand.

KIRO 7 morning anchor John Knicely checked with Diamond Parking to find market rates at other parking garages. At the Diamond Parking Building off Elliott Avenue, not far from Seattle Center, the monthly parking rate is currently $225/month. Other garages downtown go up to $330/month.

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The budget proposal shows Seattle Center parking revenue for the city of more than $5.7 million next year and $5.8 million in 2020. The revenue would all go to the Seattle Center fund.

“I feel like if it raises money for the right things in the city I'm all for it,” said Rob West, who takes the bus to work downtown. “And I think anything that discourages cars coming into the city is a good thing.  People are driven to public transportation more.”

It's now up to the Seattle City Council to approve the mayor's budget including the Seattle Center parking rates. KIRO 7 will let you know what happens.