Parking Meter

Transportation Nation

From Parking Meter to Bike Parking

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

New York City removed its last single-spaced parking meter this week.

But in some parts of the city, the bones of 160 old meters have been retrofitted to accommodate bike parking.

Formerly a parking meter, now a bike rack on Columbus Avenue (photo by Kate Hinds)

In addition to Manhattan's Upper West Side (see photo above) the NYC Department of Transportation has installed the parking meter bike racks along 7th Avenue in Park Slope, Brooklyn, and on 37th Avenue in Flushing, Queens.

This isn't a new idea. Other cities do this as well, like Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Cambridge bike parking (photo by Kate Hinds)

It saves cities the trouble of digging the poles out of the foundation, and gives bikers a much-needed place to lock up. According to Transportation Alternatives, there's only one bike rack for every 31 cyclists in New York City.


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Transportation Nation

TN MOVING STORIES: NYC To Ditch Last Single-Space Parking Meter; LA Eyes Lengthening Yellow Lights

Monday, September 19, 2011

Top stories on TN:

NY's MTA has a new weekend web page to clear up the service work information morass. (Link)

California upgraded its highway "mission control" traffic monitoring videos. (Link)

The new model parking meter (Kate Hinds)

Now that Los Angeles has killed its red light traffic camera program, the city is looking at lengthening yellow lights to improve safety. (Los Angeles Times)

New York City will remove its last single-space parking meter today. (New York Times)

Will New York's congestion pricing debate be revived? (NY Daily News)

San Francisco's Central Subway line -- which would finally bring service to its Chinatown neighborhood -- has become a key issue in that city's upcoming mayoral race. (NPR)

The MTA will unveil an iPad-like transit information device at a downtown station today. (New York Daily News)

Editorial: Atlanta can't improve transit by "winging it" -- the region must thoroughly vet its transit governance bill. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

DC's Metro has been trying to shorten station names. But one community wants the name of their stop to be longer. (WAMU)

Ray LaHood travels to St. Paul today to promote the president's jobs bill. (MPR)

Newark opened its first non-profit bike exchange shop. (Star-Ledger)

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Transportation Nation

Trouble Finding A Parking Space In San Francisco? There's An App For That -- And It's Changing Parking Meter Prices

Thursday, September 01, 2011

SFpark manager Jay Primus. (Photo by Casey Miner/KALW)

(San Francisco – KALW) The city of San Francisco is making its first round of changes to parking meter costs based on data gathered from its street sensors around town. The idea is for meter and garage rates to be based on demand – so popular blocks will cost more, less crowded ones will be cheaper, and everyone will spend a little less time circling the block. How's it working?

According to Jay Primus, the manager of the program, "it’s a little bit like the Goldilocks principle. We don’t want it too hot, we don’t want it too cold – we want it just right. In this case, prices not too high or too low, but just right for the demand we see."

You can hear the whole story over at KALW.


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Transportation Nation

SFPark Launches Thursday

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

(San Francisco – Casey Miner, KALW News) The price may be steep, but the payoff is high: a dense city where no one ever has to circle for parking. On Thursday, San Francisco will officially launch SFpark, a dynamic pricing program that aims to ensure at least one free space on every block at any given time.

The price of that space will vary depending on demand: for the first few months, prices will remain in the city's normal range of $2-$3.50 an hour, but eventually they could go as high as $18 a space for, say, parking outside the ballpark during a Giants game. But don't worry, you won't get walloped: prices will increase incrementally by no more than 50 cents each month (so no $16 jumps), and everyone will be able to access real-time pricing and availability info. If it's too expensive to drive, the city's hoping people won't.

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Transportation Nation

Should Cities Sell Off Parking Meters and Garages to Make Money?

Friday, April 15, 2011

A downtown Manhattan parking meter--whose rates ARE rising (Kate Hinds)

(Andrea Bernstein, Transportation Nation) So far, only Chicago (a few years back) and Indianapolis (beginning this spring) have completed deals to lease out their parking meters to private companies.  Chicago got more than a billion dollars in cash up front, but the  deal was widely criticized after the private company, Morgan Stanley, immediately raised rates.

The Mayors of Los Angeles and Pittsburgh, pleading empty coffers, tried to lease out their systems -- but those plans were resoundingly rejected by city councils, who said long-term leases to manage parking were just a ruse to raise rates.

But is raising rates such a bad idea?  Rachel Weinberger, of the University of Pennsylvania, says  paltry rate hikes in many cities, like Boston, which raised rates a quarter after 25 years, is a mismanagement of an asset that cities can no longer afford.  She says don't privatize the systems -- just use them to collect more money.

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But the Deputy Mayor of Indianapolis, Michael Huber, says the private sector has the capital to make technological improvements that the city can't, and that maybe its not such a bad idea to hire private companies as a buffer.   Hear the full story here, on Marketplace.

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Transportation Nation

NYC To Raise On-Street Parking Fees

Thursday, November 18, 2010

(Andrea Bernstein, Transportation Nation)  New York City's Mayor, Michael Bloomberg, will phase in on-street parking increases over the next six months.  The move is part of the Mayor's so-called "budget-mod," an amendment to the existing budget to close projected shortfalls.

The city will up the rates from $2.50 to $3.00 south of Manhattan's 86th street, and north of 86th Street parking will go from $0.75 an hour to $1.00 an hour.

City hall officials are noting the city's rates are still way below market rates for parking, which can run around $20 an hour in Manhattan. The city is also looking to increase the deployment of muni-meters, which allow for differential pricing according to demand.  Officials say this isn't just about increasing revenue, but also helping retailers by ensuring greater turnover, and thus more open spots for potential customers.

Look for more so-called market flexible parking pricing in your future.

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Transportation Nation

The Parking Meter, Born Today!

Friday, July 16, 2010

(Andrea Bernstein, Transportation Nation) It's the 75th anniversary of the Parking Meter (video courtesy of the Oklahoma History Center above)  invented in Oklahoma City by an entrepreneur who noticed that all the spots were being occupied by shopkeepers, not shoppers. In depression-era Oklahoma, it cost a nickel a hour, today it costs 25 cents for about ten minutes. But as Sunset Park speech therapist Debbie Shiwbalek notes "if we're taking about a Manhattan studio" that much space would cost "at least $100K, so maybe this isn't so bad after all." The story, on Marketplace.

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