Problems and Prospects of Curbside Parking in Lahore: PolicyImplications for Effective Management
Lahore is a fast-growing metropolis experiencing rapid growth in people and vehicle population. This unprecedented growth has led to urban sprawl, dependency on motorized transport, and increased parking space demands throughout the city limits. Off-street parking supply is insufficient and the demand is met mainly by roadside parking with and without any authorization. Parking on the roads and sidewalks has resulted in reduction in traffic capacity, traffic speed variation, accidents and disruption in smooth flow of traffic. Though the government has adopted measures in the past to streamline roadside parking activities, these efforts have proved counter-productive. This paper provides a critical analysis of the existing parking situation in Lahore based on detailed surveys and interviews. It presents an assessment of the functional performance of selected parking sites located at various roads. The findings not only provide significant evidence of the problems caused by haphazard curbside parking but also highlight its prospects if managed properly. The paper argues that absence of by-laws governing curbside parking, weak institutions, and inadequate public transport are the main causes of prevailing parking crisis. It concludes that development of curbside parking regulations in line with urban transport policy is a first step towards managing existing and future curbside parking resources in Lahore.