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Nightmare Parking in Sugar House

Mar 10, 2016 10:27AM ● Published by Bryan Scott

By Natalie Mollinet |

Sugar House - Parking in the heart of Sugar House can be a pain, especially down by McClelland Street. A couple of the businesses, including Pei Wei, Barnes and Noble and Habit Burger, are ticketing people using their parking lot even if there aren’t customers in their parking lot. 

Many people have parked in the Pei Wei parking to go to businesses across the street only to come back and find a parking ticket on their car because they weren’t Pei Wei customers. More than just Pei Wei is getting involved; other businesses in that area will ticket or ask you to move if you’re not planning on dining with them.

Along Highland Drive just past Sugar House Brewery, there is an underground parking option, but you do need to be heading south to get into the underground parking. If you are there for more than 20 minutes, there is a $10 charge. But if you’re planning on eating at Buffalo Wild Wings, the Pub or other restaurants along that strip, you can get validated. 

One resident, Lisa Morrise, said there are too many restaurants around and not enough parking.

“Clearly not enough [parking] for the volume of business. And [if I recall correctly], some of the lots have had huge car-eating potholes,” Morrise said. 

“I receive a lot of negative comments from people regarding parking in Sugar House. Diamond Parking has managed to convince property owners to utilizing them to protect their spaces, but really this is only hurting the businesses who lease space from those property owners,” Summer Shumway, the chair of the Sugar House chamber, said. 

An extensive study was done with the parking situation involving Sugar House and downtown Salt Lake. The study showed that there is more than enough parking in both areas, but the area isn’t being utilized properly.

The report stated, “the unfortunate thing here is that we will not see any cohesive, consistent or sustainable solutions come into fruition in this regard unless there is some sort of parking authority who helps to regulate and provide consistency.” In short, there is parking but every parking place is being managed in a different way. 

With many renovations completed in Sugar House, the area is supposed to be walkable place with the addition to the tunnel under 1300 East connecting the park and the heart of Sugar House, as well as the additional parking around the Shopko area. 

“Sugar House is supposed to be a walkable community and people should not be punished for parking one place and visiting numerous establishments. They should be encouraged to do so,” Shumway said. 

Sugar House is an accessible area if you know how to navigate it. The additional parking underground on Highland Drive allows access to the restaurants on McClelland as well as the new restaurants along Highland Drive and 2100 South. 

Most of the parking available is on the street on McClelland, with limited parking spots near the Habit Burger for tenants in the nearby apartments. In the near future, parking is going to become limited as development begins and could cause problems in that area. 

Bill Knowles, the Sugar House ombudsman said, “What parking will go away will be the parking behind Fats Grill and Leisure Living.” 

The new buildings, according to sources, will have parking for not only residents in the upcoming buildings but also the public. The large business building that is set to go up where the Dixon building and Hyland Plaza are will have a 450-car parking garage. When that building will be completed is not yet set, but more parking will be available in the future. 

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