A ‘perfect storm’ parking wise in Eureka

Over at The Humboldt Consequential the other day they had a good discussion about Jail expansion, definitely worth the read.

Expansion of the Humboldt County Jail: Is it worth the cost?


The part of the story THC didn’t get into is the location of the expansion being the graveled parking area next to the current court house. It’s full every weekday with hundreds of cars. Where are all these cars going to park? It’s extremely difficult to find a safe and secure place to park anywhere in Old town and Downtown currently. Imagine another 100 or more cars thrown in the mix. There is very little disabled parking in that area, and the ramp that allows wheelchair access to the courthouse is basically connected to the gravel lot. So what’s going to happen when folks with limited mobility want to address the Board of Supervisors? Are they going to traverse three, or four, or five blocks to make their voice heard? Maybe, but we would imagine that many won’t bother to show up, which will keep many important viewpoints from being heard.

As Old Town has become more gentrified, more offices and residences have located there. Most of these people who live and work there drive cars, exacerbating the problem. The city is also talking about developing along the waterfront where there is gravel parking as well. Instead of parking in the gravel lot and taking a 50/50 chance of getting your vehicle broken into, you’ll have to park somewhere else in Old Town (in the off chance there’s actually a place to park). Then add Eureka’s crazy “parklets” idea and you’re looking at a ‘perfect storm’ parking wise in Eureka.


19 thoughts on “A ‘perfect storm’ parking wise in Eureka

  1. the documents available online for this week on the B of S agenda included both a connector between the jail and this rehab project as well as a parking garage.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Rick is correct, in a way. However, even with some parking at the facility there will be a lot of new employees and visitors to the building, making it really a net loss.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Please share with us the number of new parking spaces projected, since you have declared it a “net loss”. You obviously have information that no one else has.


      • The info is there JW. The probation day center, DHHS mental health area, SWAP, etc. are all spelled out in the plans. I believe it was about 70 spots in the garage, but that won’t cover the workers, visitors and people with business in the courthouse.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Sorry JP, but the total spaces in the garage calls for 150 spaces + 20 Handicap Spaces.

        You need to get the facts straight BEFORE spouting off!


      • Let me get this straight, they’re going to build underground parking level that going to hold 150 cars + 20 handicap spaces? You can’t fit that many in “anarchy” gravel parking lot that’s there now. Something is wrong with those numbers


      • The info I cited is from the signed resolution proposition from 8/18/15 and available online through the BOS Agenda. 70–74 vehicles is what was proposed for the garage.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. They have needed to do something for a long time. Parking will be the next issue the city council can fight over.


  3. We need a jail that is a separate facility from the Courthouse, maybe across the street where the unemployment office is. .


  4. Parking in both down town and old town has been a problem for years. It has been holding back increases in business and on the table of merchant discussions and has been brought up at council meetings many times over the years. Nothing positive has happened to my knowledge. Same ole same ole. I find it hard to understand why the city does not equate limited parking with limited sales tax revenue.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I wonder if our opinions on this issue are less about left/right and more about age.

    And not just that as we grow older, we rely more on our vehicles. Also, I think (hope?) younger people can begin to understand and, importantly, envision, a world beyond the auto.

    I’m 48, I’ve witnessed our urban landscape bow down to the power of the auto to such absurdities that they have become normal.

    I have to stand in line with vehicles to buy my am coffee at Dutch Brothers. Gas stations now have to have convenience stores instead of auto-shops to make enough revenue. Suburban streets are homages to our love of our vehicles to the point the garages are now the most prominent portion of our homes.

    Now we want to continue this process in what should be our downtown area?

    Let’s begin to think outside our current lifestyles and begin to shoot for the types of lives we need to live.

    We need to rid ourselves of this crutch we call the internal combustion automobile. If you are really serious about those climate change posts, the time to make these changes were yesterday. I can, if absolutely necessary, live without a car. Can you?

    We need to be able to at least give ourselves the choice to live without one if we need to or wish to.

    On a related topic – let’s expand the amount of disabled parking while we are at it.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I think expanding disabled parking around the courthouse is a wonderful idea. The courthouse has many county departments besides the Superior Court and it does seem a little unfair to expect disabled folks to traverse several blocks/cross 4th or 5th Street to get there.

      Liked by 4 people

  6. Jonboy….let me make sure I’ve got this visual picture right: you stand in line, between cars, as you WALK up to the drive up window for you coffee?

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Parking in downtown Eureka wouldn’t be such a drag if they had a nice circulator system of public transport which only served the “downtown” region. You could then park 5 to 10 blocks away, and take the bus to the courthouse, but as it is now, anyone with the slightest disability needs to park right in front of whatever place they’re going. It’s not a matter of “we don’t have enough parking in downtown,” it’s a matter of “the spot in front of my ____ is always full.” With localized transport, that wouldn’t matter, you could park anywhere there was space and still end up dropped off close, closer or in front of, where you need to go.

    The most egregious event of the clueless car owner in last year was the Santa Rosa politician who was appointed our State Rep (you know the one… we might have voted, but we weren’t given a choice)… had his first “TOWN HALL” meeting in a room that seats 50 maybe, in a building with at most 30 parking spaces, eight blocks from the bus line and 9 blocks from the nearest public parking lot… in a county with 135,000 (more or less) population. Can you say “he doesn’t care to hear you” any louder?

    So much for government of the people as only his nearest and dearest would fit in that room and the rest of us – particularly the handicapped – could go do something else as there was no way to park there, or get there if you weren’t the lucky ONE (count em ONE) handicapped to get the ONE handicapped space in the venue he chose for his meeting.

    If our politicians, who claim to care if we vote for them (BTW, I’ll vote for anybody but Mr. “You’ll all fit in 50 chairs” that we got now)… can’t understand the point of Public Parking and Public Transport making meetings Accessible for all, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the courthouse architects, being young, male, not homeless, most likely white and with a car has never given the slightest thought to those who are older, handicapped, with children or any any other way encumbered and still trying to function in this world.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Well, at least there will soon be more available parking spaces at Bayshore Mall! With Sears Corp announcing the closure of Eureka Sears by July 1st (along with the closures of the Kmarts in Eureka and McKinleyville) and Walmart’s plan to relocate to it’s new location in the Spring of 2017.


  8. Ok this expansion will never happen. The Sheriff already tried to get the funds and it was denied. The county cannot afford it. It is not needed. He keeps letting Drunk in Publics out (one of which went on to kill a priest), then the jail expansion is not needed. Those are by far the largest class of arrests (trust me it isn’t even close) After Prop 47 passed the amount of felony arrests plummeted and you don’t get any time in Humboldt for a misdemeanor at all. It is a really cool system if you are a criminal. Commit a crime and there is no repercussion. No jail expansion is needed. What is needed is that horrible dirt parking lot needs to be asphalted. Yes, most other civilized areas do asphalt their parking lots. The shock absorbers like it and yes, people who have difficulty getting around like it as well.


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