The DNAinfo archives brought to you by WNYC.
Read the press release here.

The Steep Cost of Downtown Parking: Gold Coast Spot Listed For $115,000

 Realtor George Ayling says a parking space that sold for $15,000 in the late '90s and early 2000s can now be rented for $125 to $175 a month. "That's a nice return," Ayling said.
Realtor George Ayling says a parking space that sold for $15,000 in the late '90s and early 2000s can now be rented for $125 to $175 a month. "That's a nice return," Ayling said.
View Full Caption

GOLD COAST — For $115,000, you can buy a Lakeview studio or a two-unit building in North Lawndale.

But in the real estate hot spot that is the Gold Coast, $115,000 will net you a parking space and 143 square feet of storage.

That's the asking price for a garage spot that comes with an 11-by-13-foot storage space (with 14-foot ceilings) inside the Park Newberry building at 55 W. Delaware Place. A one-bedroom, one-bathroom unit in the building is listed for $415,000.

For the parking spot and storage unit, monthly assessments will tack on $72 more, while annual property taxes will cost you $741.

Sound steep? Realtors familiar with the area say buyers will be more than willing to pay it.

 A parking space at this building costs $115,000.
A parking space at this building costs $115,000.
View Full Caption
Google Maps Street View

For a "quality building" — one that includes features like security and temperature control in a coveted location — "the prime value stems from availability," said John Irwin, a real estate agent who tracks market fluctuations in the Loop and Near North Side monthly on his blog.

"In the Gold Coast, [parking] is going to be pretty pricey, because parking in the Gold Coast is at a premium," he said. "A lot of the single-family homes and a lot of the condos don't have parking. Those places were built so long ago, they were built before automobiles, so they don't have alleys for parking spaces. There's a lot of demand."

Ginger Menne, the Baird & Warner agent representing the space, said pricing the property was a challenge "because there's nothing else like it."

The only other storage space she's seen for sale on the Gold Coast in years was half that size at 21 W. Chestnut St., and sold for $65,000 in 2004, Menne said.

A parking space in the Loop or Gold Coast will reasonably sell for $55,000 to $65,000 for a single car spot, Irwin said.

Coldwell Banker lists a tandem two-car spot in Trump Tower for $120,000 that's only available to building residents, but nonresident renters are a big market for buildings without those requirements, Irwin said.

While the Gold Coast may face peak demands for the minimum 8-by-18-foot properties, parking spaces are rented and purchased all over Chicago — though typically for a lower price tag.

ParkingSpotter.com lists available spaces by neighborhood, most of which are rented, many on a month-to-month basis. In Lincoln Park, monthly parking spots are priced between $150 and $250. West Town rates hover around $100 per month, and in Edgewater, rentals are listed for $100 to $200 monthly.

The West Loop is facing a spike in demand for parking space thanks to last month's new restrictions meant to limit "daytrippers" from parking in free spots for hours.

The six-month pilot program bans parking from 1:30-3:30 p.m. on 14 West Loop blocks, forcing residents like George Ayling to rent a spot, or otherwise trek back home at lunch to move their cars.

"It's making garage spots and parking more and more expensive and harder to find," said Ayling, president of Select a Fee Real Estate Systems and Rentals, which he runs from an office two blocks from his home.

Ayling often brokers parking space sales in the Loop and surrounding neighborhoods, and said that while demand is rising, it's always been high.

"If I sell a unit with a parking space to someone who doesn't need it, that guy's gonna sell it overnight," Ayling said. One client posted a note about his unused parking space and was immediately contacted by seven people, he said.

"And they're all ready to write the check tomorrow," Ayling said.

In the case of the $115,000 spot, Ayling said the storage space significantly sweetens the deal. He recently sold a 10-by-20-foot storage room with 9-foot ceilings for $10,000 at 920 W. Madison St.

Menne said she showed the space to an interested buyer Sunday.

In New York's hip Park Slope neighborhood, area residents have been clamoring for a spot in the Garage Condominium, where spaces were selling for $80,000 last month. The owner said he expects those prices to keep climbing.

Ayling said he's seen demand for parking ownership grow steadily since the 1990s. But it wasn't until the West Loop parking squeeze that the longtime resident had to bite the bullet and rent a space of his own.

"Downtown, people are always trying to find a place to park, and it's not an easy thing to do," he said. "I now spend an extra $150 a month to park my car, just so I'm not spending $200 a month in parking tickets. ... And it doesn't look likely to change anytime soon."