SFPark Releases Data on Two-Year Pilot Phase
"SFpark has released new comprehensive stats collected during its two-year pilot program phase, documenting the numerous benefits that it garnered just by pricing parking according to demand," reports Aaron Bialick.
The report delivers positive findings about the impact of the system: "In the areas where SFpark was tested — Civic Center, the Embarcadero, Downtown, the Mission, the Fillmore, the Marina, and Fisherman’s Wharf – the SFMTA found that SFpark resulted in cheaper parking prices overall, more readily available parking, many fewer parking citations, and much less time wasted by drivers circling around, looking for open parking spots." The article includes specific data backing up those claims.
Despite the program's successes, neighborhoods like Potrero Hill and Dogpatch have strongly opposed the implementation of the system. Bialick recommends one change in the program to perhaps preempt arguments that the system is a crass money grab on the part of Muni: although SFPark enacts many of Donald Shoup's recommendations on parking management, it has yet to implement the key practice of investing revenue generated by parking fees to local benefit districts. SFMTA’s current chief, Ed Reiskin, told Streetsblog that the transit agency will consider local investments, but that the agency would require a change in the City Charter to do so.
Now that the pilot has wrapped, what's next? "The SFMTA expects to propose a plan for SFpark’s expanded operation in the fall. For now, the SFpark phone app and in-ground parking sensors have been turned off, though the agency still monitors parking occupancy through meter payments."