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Saturday, July 12, 2008

SF's Parking Pains Place Fourth in the U.S.

Posted By on Sat, Jul 12, 2008 at 4:40 PM

click to enlarge meters.jpg

How many quarters does it take to keep those S.F. meter maids away? Answer: Too many.

According to a recent survey by real estate research firm Colliers International, our city yields the fourth highest cost in the country to park your vehicle. At a whopping average of $350 a month -- $28 a day, $4,200 a year -- San Francisco ranks only behind Downtown Manhattan ($600), New York City midtown ($500) and Boston ($460).

Colliers believes that parking costs have risen across the country for the fifth consecutive year due to an increase of office spaces used by businesses. Yet, of the 51 U.S. districts, Californians in Bakersfield pay the least for their parking at an average of $40 a month.

On top of today’s $50 parking tickets, Mayor Newsom has instated the $23 million S.F. Park Program that will hike S.F. meter prices beginning in September. A fourth of S.F. meters will apply new policies and technology to raise meter prices during peak periods of traffic, which is supposed to make parking less accessible.

Isn’t trying to find parking costly enough?

In retrospect, four dollars in downtown S.F. can buy you a gallon of gas, or little over an hour at your nearest parking meter. Those thinking of being wait-listed for a Prius -- the car can’t save you money here. But don’t complain, enjoy the “low” costs while you can. --Edward Paik

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Janine Kahn

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