Wareham is a shoreline town adjacent to Cape Cod and about 55 miles southeast of Boston. Onset Village is one of Wareham’s most well-known destinations and serves as a civic, commercial, and community center for residents, tourists, and visitors. During the summer season, this small community doubles its population, and everyone tries to park near its beautiful beach. However, perennial parking spill-over from beach and event activities were greatly impacting residences and local businesses, and the Town could not find a way to encourage visitors to park more remotely.
Through a State technical assistance grant, Nelson\Nygaard conducted a parking management study, beginning with data collection and analysis and public outreach. We presented several recommendations to balance community protection with the economic benefit of seasonal visitors in ways that respected community goals. Strategies included a residential parking benefit district, new reverse-angle on-street parking, demand-responsive adjustments to parking pricing, improved lot layouts, new on-street bike facilities, and a wayfinding, signage, pricing, and information system for increasing remote parking during demand peaks – all while preserving front-door availability for local businesses.
For the first time in decades, residents and stakeholders supported notable parking changes that the Town is now having Nelson\Nygaard expand to Wareham’s commercial downtown.