11 Mar 2022
Parking in Seaside, Florida, runs on intelligent management that aims always to offer a 10-15% vacancy rate in parking spaces at all times. This means that day visitors to the town can always find a handy slot close to where they're going.
In 2022, the management system has been further refined to an hourly monitoring system that adjusts the variable parking fee on the paid parking spaces close to the center of town. The paid parking relieves the traffic load where vehicles are endlessly circling and looking for parking - and Seaside being the ultimate walking town, you only ever have to park the car once.
All proceeds from the paid parking are used for the free shuttle service that runs every 15 minutes from the huge public parking lot 2 miles away. The shuttle carries visitors over the scenic route through Grayton Beach State Park, and runs from 6 am until midnight every day.
For 2022, there are more shuttles added to the service, as well as more bike racks throughout the town for the cyclists, and more golf-cart spaces (for those with medical needs). All of this stems from the ongoing program to keep Seaside as a place that's easy to get around - as easy as it always has been, even now with its tremendous popularity as a day destination from all along the Emerald Coast.
Guests who stay in the town typically find that when they park their vehicles they never start them again until they leave. In between, the small town is made for walking, with eclectic experiences and adventures on every street and alley. Guests here turn into locals instantly. Time slows down. The pace is congenial.
Day visitors are now able to feel the same way, with the large paid parking program that operates on Smolian Circle, right next to the heart of Seaside's action. Park once, and just stroll around, or pick up a bike to ride for the added fun.
The heart of the paid parking program is the Passport Parking app - download it here - and the friendly human attendants who staff the circle are there to help newcomers get in the groove.
Everyone likes being popular but the price for this can be crowds, and lack of parking. Seaside has been intelligently managing this for the last couple of years, and the paid program offers a self-regulating means of making sure there's parking available the way it should be - in the form of serendipity.
For more details on how parking works in Seaside, see our write-up from last year: Seaside Offers Parking for Day Visitors.