Demand is high for reserved parking spaces in downtown Charleston. A recent listing at 23 Burns Lane for a 10 by 10 rectangular parking space came at a premium price of $74,000. The Burns Lane property is listed by The Cassina Group, and is not even the most expensive parking space available for purchase. Recently four parking spaces on East Bay Street were listed for $98,000 each.
Jennifer Davis, owner of Domicile Real Estate Brokerage explained that it is increasingly difficult to find a space like the one at Burns Lane downtown. The demand is high and in the past few years “it just escalated dramatically,” she said in a recent Post & Courier article. “We’ve sold them behind Pottery Barn,” Davis said and sold them one by one. “We did a big lease to Apple on King Street for their parking spaces. We sold one lot on Elliott Street last year, with spaces going for around $80,000 apiece,” Davis said. The limited land and high demand for parking spaces by downtown businesses is particularly acute and has led to the expensive prices.
Downtown Charleston zoning codes require the owner of property to have a minimum number of parking spaces. A sit-down restaurant must have one parking spot per 150 square feet used by its patrons, and a parking space per 200 square feet of an outside seating area. The zoning codes are one of the big driving factors in the demand for parking spaces, since businesses must satisfy these requirements.
The 13 parking garages operated by the city of Charleston in contrast charge a daily maximum of $16. If a customer paid the maximum every day for a year this would only add up to $5,840. It would take 13 years of parking at a city garage to cover the cost of the parking space listed at 23 Burns Lane. It would take 17 years to cover the listing price of the parking spaces on East Bay. Davis noted that one of these parking spaces is worth more than the car that will use it.
Source: Post & Courier, “Demand drives up the prize on premium downtown parking spots,” by Caitlin Byrd
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