Today’s Headlines

  • Ground Breaking on 2nd Street Redesign (SFBay)
  • City Set to Charge Market Rates for Car Storage (SFChron)
  • More on Plans for Downtown Nordstrom’s Parking Lot (Hoodline)
  • Infill Plans for South Van Ness (Socketsite)
  • Tour of Balboa Reservoir Development Site (Hoodline)
  • Supes Rescue Rich Neighborhood (Curbed, SFWeekly, Hoodline)
  • Harbor Bay Ferry Ridership (EastBayTimes)
  • Pedestrian Killed in Richmond Crosswalk (EastBayTimes)
  • SF’s Biggest Mistakes (Curbed)
  • Huge New Park in San Mateo County (EastBayTimes)
  • Best Holiday Lights (Curbed)
  • Great Bike Rides to Drive Your Car to (SFChron)

Get state headlines at Streetsblog CA, national headlines at Streetsblog USA

  • mx

    I don’t understand the plan to expand SFpark to all meters.

    Does anybody ever actually:
    Manage to find a parking space
    Parallel park
    Get out
    Check the meter
    Decide it’s too expensive
    Repeat this process someplace else hoping for a better result?

    The existing SFpark system is chaotic enough. If you look at the maps, prices swing wildly if you so much as go around the corner or wait an hour. The SFpark app isn’t even in the App Store anymore (for iOS anyway), so you can’t even check the pricing maps there if you want to be an informed, rational consumer and seek out the best price.

    The end effect is that parking meters just seem to cost completely random amounts of money.

    And to the extent some people are forced to respond to the economic incentive, complicated as it is, is it the right thing for the city to base its entire parking system around people for whom a $.50 change in meter rates represents a significant hardship?

  • If the app works it’s easy.

  • mx

    I mean, I don’t think encouraging even more people to pull out an app while they’re trying to drive is a good idea, even if the app still existed. Even the map on the SFpark website is awfully complicated; you have to click into each block to see all the time-of-day prices.

    Fundamentally, I just don’t see the point of a system where meters on Polk on one side of Civic Center cost more than twice as much as meters on Larkin on the other side (in the morning, it’s 7 times as much). The garage in the middle is more expensive than the meters from noon-3, but cheaper from 3-6, at least until all the prices change again. I don’t see how any rational person is actually keeping track of this chaos and making decisions based on it.

  • Stuart

    I don’t understand the plan to expand SFpark to all meters.

    Does anybody ever actually:[…]

    Have you seen the pilot evaluation?
    http://sfpark.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/SFpark_Pilot_Project_Evaluation.pdf
    There’s an executive summary at the start if you aren’t interested in all the details. It seems pretty clear that the answer is yes.

    Fundamentally it seems like your argument against it is “it doesn’t seem like this would work”. But they tried it and it very clearly did work; data trumps intuition.

    (I won’t claim to know the reasons for that, but your scenario doesn’t allow for the very real possibility that a fair amount of parking is done by people who park in a specific area regularly, and can learn the patterns for that area, which I would imagine plays a role.)

    And to the extent some people are forced to respond to the economic incentive

    Since average rates fell slightly, overall it seems unlikely that increased economic hardship was a result. I’m sure it’s possible to construct anecdotes on either side, but that’s true of essentially any change where resources are so limited. E.g., you can find people arguing both for and against the red lanes, both claiming they are on the side of the working class.

  • Jeffrey Baker

    It’s not like these rates are a big surprise to everybody. They aren’t really equivalent to “surge pricing” a la Uber. They can only change 4 times per year.