By Tyler Falk
Posting in Cities
A new parking program in San Francisco is making parking easier, and streets safer for those who don't drive. Find out how.
Parking is a headache in most cities. But San Francisco is working to make parking easier for people who drive -- though they'll pay for it -- and safer for those who use other forms of transportation.
This spring the city rolled out a pilot parking program, SF park. Newly installed parking meters, along with road sensors will track where there are open parking spaces and the real-time parking data is made available on smartphones and online, reducing the amount of time spent driving around looking for parking.
The goal is to create open spaces on virtually every block. To make that possible, parking meters are priced based on demand. Each month parking demand on every block will be reviewed and prices will increase or decrease based on demand.
"Right now at our garages and lots it's more expensive than it is on streets, so people have every financial incentive to circle around looking for parking, which is exactly what we don't want to happen," said Jay Primus, SF park manager on a recent Streetfilms video. "So we'll be lowering prices in garages and lots to make those relatively more attractive. The whole goal is to get people off the streets and matched up with parking spaces as quickly as possible."
Watch the Streetfilms video to see how it works:
Photo: SF park
Apr 19, 2011
SF Park is an EPIC FAILURE! I live in a pilot area SOMA where SF Park installed meters. The end result is that the residents in my neighborhood can no longer park near our homes, apartments, and businesses. This is absolutely a none too transparent attempt to raise taxes on citiizens expected to support over EIGHT THOUSAND City employees making over $150,000 a year under the guise of "going green." The EPIC FAILURE is that **NO ONE IS PARKING AT THE METERS** along the Caltrain line Near Townsend and 6th street. Residents on Bluxome Street now have to park our cars up to 4 blocks away from our homes or pay $2.00 - $3.00 an hour to park at the meters to bring in groceries or off load our children. Is it any wonder why families have given up on San Francisco? It is a huge inconvenience to the businesses and residents in my neighborhood and its made SOMA a less desirable place to rent, own real estate, or operate a business. The residents see this as a money grab by the SFMTA who rammed these meters through without regard for the needs or input of our neighborhood. The city takes away street parking from hardworking residents so that the SFMTA can build websites and useless smartphone apps that require a $100.00 a month cell phone plan. *This is class warfare that favors the wealthiest residents of the city and penalizes poorer, working class citizens who have less money and education. SF Park states that that they use "innovative technology and advanced pricing strategies". I say that residents should not have to own a smart phone, or be digitally literate in order to park their cars. If you are elderly, disabled, or on a fixed income, you will be forced to take MUNI to get around the city. The MTA is basically auctioning off the parking parking spaces so that the highest payer wins! This de facto tax threatens to price middle income residents out of our neighborhoods and DECIMATE small businesses. More than 1 in 3 of San Francisco's nearly 27,000 city workers earned $100,000 or more last year. The revenue from these new meters will only benefit the pockets, and pension plans of city employees. Residents in other parts of the city should fight this fascism and not allow these meters to be installed. Jay Primus, and the Government officials who implemented this poorly run project should be ousted from their six figure, App writing, Ivory Towers.
If the stated goal is making it "easier" for people to park then how will we know if it works? My experience in San Francisco with regard to parking is you drive around and pull in when somebody pulls out. So do we have a bunch of people all making a beeline for a parking space all at the same time? Get out the video cams and revive America's Funniest Home Videos.
Parking in San Francisco is rough in most places. The residential areas tend to have short spaces between driveways that make parking hard. I prefer to take public transportation downtown to save money on parking and time spent searching for suitable parking. It would seem that using a smart phone while driving is a distraction even when using it to look for parking.