Passport Parking App
Raleigh’s been a little slow on the uptake with this one—cities like Durham, Wilmington, Asheville and others have had mobile parking apps for a while now—but, as of last month, you can pay to park on the streets in the greater downtown area from the convenience of your smartphone. Download the Passport Parking App and pay for parking without ever feeding money into a parking meter. Never worry again about running out to the street in time to re-up before the meter expires (the app will even send you a reminder!) Keep track of your parking history, receive emailed receipts and get other updates and alerts. The app is free to download from the iPhone app store and Android’s Google Play.
RDU Airport Parking
Be prepared to pay more to park at Raleigh-Durham International Airport soon. RDU’s 2019-2020 budget made public last month calls for parking fee increases. The daily maximum for Premier spots will jump from $18 to $22. Central parking spots will increase from $14 to $15. The daily maximum for parking in the airport’s Lot 2 will be $12. The daily maximum for the Economy 3 lot will jump from $7 to $8 and the Economy 4 lot will go up from $6 to $7. If pricier parking isn’t a good reason to get dropped off at your terminal—or better yet, to catch a Go Triangle bus out to RDU—we don’t know what is.
After more than three years of planning, the long-awaited Citrix Cycle bikes hit Raleigh’s streets last month! When the bike share program is fully operational, 300 bikes will be docked at 30 stations across the city, around downtown, in southeast Raleigh, along Hillsborough Street and at the NC Museum of Art. The public can rent the bikes for short trips using a membership card or the Citrix Cycle Mobile App for their smartphones. Around 70 percent of the bikes in the fleet come equipped with Pedelec electric-assist motors—you’ll know them by their bolt of lightning decals on the bikes’ back wheels—which give riders a boost as they’re pedaling, while 100 bikes come with the traditional eight gears. For information on station locations, membership, pricing and more, check out citrixcycle.com.
Raleigh Downtown Transit Plan
Last month, the City of Raleigh unveiled its plans for multimodal transit downtown with recommendations for bus rapid transit, bike facilities and streetscape improvements for pedestrians, with an overall goal of making it easier for people to move around downtown by bus, bike or on foot. By 2027, the city hopes to have a network of BRT corridors flowing into and out of downtown. In the near term, by 2023, the plan is to have a BRT service installed along New Bern Avenue, to and from downtown and out to Wake Med. BRT includes dedicated lanes for buses so they don’t get caught up in traffic and city planners were careful not to put new bus and bike lanes on the same streets. New bike facilities will include bike lanes on some streets with vertical and horizontal separations between bikes and car traffic. These bike lanes could be multi-use paths and urban trails, bike lanes separated from the street by on-street parking and two-way cycle tracks. (Speaking of cycle tracks, the city will test its first one ever on Harrington Street during a three-day pop-up event starting April 5.) Other bike facilities included in the transit plan are buffered bike lanes and bikeways that are not vertically separated from car traffic, one-way separated bike lanes around bus stops and buffered bike lanes and BRT at intersections. In conjunction with the transit plan, there is a framework for redeveloping downtown’s streetscape, identifying sub-districts with unique characteristics and classifying streets downtown as residential, connector streets, transit streets or special streets with distinct character, such as Fayetteville Street, Hillsborough Street and Glenwood Avenue. Planners hope to explore desired amenities within the different street designations and plan accordingly; for instance, on streets heavy with restaurants and shops, such as Hargett Street, planners want to maintain on-street parking and loading zones. You can see the plan and submit comments at goraleigh.org/downtownplan; learn more about the Harrington pop-up cycle track on the city’s website.