Yichang reforms on-street parking along BRT corridor.
Yichang has in recent months implemented a major on-street parking reform program focused along the BRT corridor in Dongshan Avenue. Roughly half of the 1,000 off-street parking spaces along the BRT corridor have been removed (see photos below), and the remaining setback parking is now better managed to eliminate or minimize encroachment on pedestrian and bicycle facilities. (Setback parking defined as parking in the area between the edge of the walkway and the building frontage. It does not include parking on the walkway, which is illegal.)
Yichang's approach to on-street parking reform focused along the BRT corridor is, to our knowledge, the first such systematic approach to implementing corridor-wide on-street parking improvements as part of a new BRT system. This is an approach which has been supported and encouraged by ITDP for the last two years, with support initially from the Grantham Foundation and later from the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and Oak Foundation. Phase 1 of the BRT system opened in July 2015, with phase 2 to Yiling District in the north opening in October. On-street parking reform will also be a key part of the BRT corridor implementation in Yiling District.
Setback and on-street parking reforms is critical to the achievement of other station area improvements. For example, improvements to walkways, bike lanes or plazas are of no practical utility if the space is later simply occupied by parked cars. The impressive on-street parking reform measures achieved along the BRT corridor in Yichang are in large part due to the strong support and guidance of the vice mayor who is in charge of enforcement by the traffic police and has played a key role in ensuring the BRT system is viewed as an 'urban development corridor'.
A bike sharing system has also been approved and is now being implemented, with the first four stations to be implemented in coming weeks and 27 phase 1 stations to be implemented in December 2015.