Parking downtown can be hard to come by — it can also be a major expense for folks working in the area. At its Tuesday, Aug. 15 meeting, the Buncombe County Commission approved a sizable expansion to the Affordable Parking Program in an effort to aid local workers.
First approved in November 2022 and launched the following month, the program was created to aid service industry and retail workers employed downtown, offering 150 spots at the Coxe Avenue parking garage that are priced at $40 per month for unlimited parking.
The program’s expansion adds 75 spots in the Coxe Avenue garage, located at 11 Sears Alley, and 50 spots in the College Street garage, located at 164 College St. The move to grow the program into the College Street garage comes after results of a January survey showed that 72% of participants would apply for the program. “I want to work, but most of my paycheck goes for parking to let me work,” writes an anonymous commenter on the survey.
Do you qualify?
Those looking to apply for a pass will have to meet several eligibility requirements:
- Work in downtown Asheville
- Make 80% of area median income (that’s less than $22.88/hour or $3,967/month)
- Present a valid driver’s license
- Pay via credit card
- Be 18 years or older
How to apply
The application for the discounted passes will open on Monday, Aug. 21 through a link on the Public Parking page of Buncombe County’s website. Passes will be issued on a first-come-first-serve basis for those who qualify.