With dwindling supply, parking prices go up

By Michael Stoler | July 27, 2010 04:30PM

Midtown and Downtown Manhattan, two of the largest central business
districts in the nation, topped this year’s Colliers International 10th
annual parking rate survey of the most expensive cities in North
America for parking.

Midtown Manhattan’s monthly median price for parking a full-size
automobile reached $538 (not including taxes), while Downtown was not
far behind at $529, according to the survey, which spans June 2009 to
June 2010. Both were more than three times the national average, though their daily parking rates have declined for the same period.

During the years of residential and hospitality development
from 2005 through 2008 many of the city’s garages were sold, reducing
the number of parking spaces in Manhattan and the outer boroughs.

A case in point is the 34-story InterContinental New York Times Square,
which opened earlier this month, and occupies a former parking lot at
44th Street and Eighth Avenue. And at least six hotels are located on
former parking garages and lots between West 33rd and West 40th
streets, and Fifth and Ninth avenues, including the Strand hotel at 33
West 37th Street.

“Supply and demand is a major factor in the stability of parking rates
in North America,” said Ross Moore, executive vice president and chief
economist for Colliers in the U.S. Parking availability in only four of
the 56 central business districts surveyed were described as “abundant”
with the remainder being “fair” or “limited.”

That situation is not expected to change much, with only six new
garages containing less than 4,000 spaces to be added in the next two
years in the country.

But compared to cities in other countries, New York City’s parking rates are a relative bargain.

Globally, London was the most expensive place in the world to park,
with an astronomical $933 median price for a monthly spot, according to
the Colliers survey. In Asia, Hong Kong and Tokyo both topped New
York’s median monthly cost for a parking spot at $744.72 and $654,
respectively. Sydney, Australia topped Manhattan with a median price of
$591.28 per month.

Michael Stoler is a columnist for The Real Deal and host of
real estate programs “The Stoler Report” and “Building New York” on
CUNY TV and on WEGTV in East Hampton. His radio show, “The Michael
Stoler Real Estate Report,” airs on 1010 WINS on Saturdays and Sundays.
Stoler is a director at Madison Realty Capital as well as an adjunct
professor at NYU Real Estate Institute, and a former contributing
editor and columnist for the New York Sun.