Downtown Manteca in a year or so is expected to have what could be a vexing parking problem.
And the City of Manteca — in partnership with the Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Stockton as well as the consulting firm of Fehr & Peers — is seeking community input on possible solutions to that and an array of other issues such as improving transit connectivity and livability in downtown.
The parking issue is related to the start of ACE service in 2023 from Ceres to San Jose as well as Ceres to Sacramento that will include a stop at Manteca’s downtown transit center.
Plans call for a passenger loading platform for enough away from the Main Street crossing to avoid having the crossing arms down when ACE is loading and off unloading passengers.
The San Joaquin Regional Rail Commission is expanding the existing transit parking lot by 150 spaces.
That, however, will not be enough. That’s because ACE is projecting once the first four initial trains are in service as many as 1,400 riders could board trains in downtown on any given day between Monday and Friday.
That has prompted several suggestions to date including:
*The city establishing a shuttle service between the station at the Orchard Valley shopping center where the city has 21 years remaining on a 35-year agreement that gives them use of nearly 1,500 parking spaces as part of a sales tax sharing agreement.
*Building a multi-level parking structure that carries a price tag of $50,000 per stall that is created.
*Putting in place a residential parking permit system on nearby neighborhood streets so commuters don’t take up spaces used by residents and their guests.
The city is seeking other input that could also include whether to restrict street parking on Moffat or perhaps pursue additional parking elsewhere.
Manteca is already looking at ways to alter the municipal bus system operations for commuters to use it to reach the transit station from various part of the city. The parking spaces will be available for other uses when trains are not running such as on weekends and at night when there are large events at nearby downtown venues such as The Veranda and Friday night football games at Manteca High.
Parking is just one aspect of the planning process designed to come up with an action plan that will allow the city to seek state grants for various transit-related and downtown improvements.
The goals are to:
*Build on recent planning efforts including the Active Transportation Plan and the ongoing general plan update.
*Support first- and last-mile connections to the new ACE service.
*Identify infill opportunities to support economic revitalization in the downtown area.
Input is being sought through early 2023.
More information can be found by going to https://bit.ly/3NZeQ6L.