archBOSTON.org

Go Back   archBOSTON.org > Boston's Built Environment > Transit and Infrastructure

Transit and Infrastructure All things T or civilly engineered within Boston Metro.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 01-23-2018, 12:33 PM   #1
tysmith95
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: North Shore
Posts: 1,948
Parking Permits

In many neighborhoods in this city, we know parking is a huge problem. Personally I think the abundance of free parking is the biggest problem, as space on the street should be sold for what it is worth.

My solution would be for the government to set a limited number of parking permits in each neighborhood, similar to how a liquor licence works. Then let the free market determine how much street parking is worth. Denser and wealthier neighborhoods like the Back Bay would have to pay a good bit for parking, while a poorer place like Mattapan would have to pay little to nothing.

This would also have the positive effect of reducing opposition to new housing. Probably the biggest neighborhood complaint to new housing development is the lack of parking. A limited number of parking permits held by residents would actually convince current residents to be in favor of new housing. Parking difficulty will remain the same, as there will be a set number of parking permits. However for residents who own permits, the value of their permit will go up when additional residents move into the neighborhood. Therefore the people who before would try to block the development of housing will now have a financial incentive to support new dense developments.

The biggest issue would be the initial implementation. No one wants to pay upfront for something that was previously free. A possible method would be to slowly phase it in, allowing current residents to keep their permits but not allowing them to sell it until the number of permits is reduced to the set number.
tysmith95 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 01:17 PM   #2
Jahvon09
Senior Member
 
Jahvon09's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Posts: 1,134
Re: Parking Permits

It is awfully hard to find parking spots at night.

I have to be home & parked in Brighton before 9, or I'm screwed! Eating out in Boston is also a problem if you are driving. Again, no place to park!!
Jahvon09 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 01:23 PM   #3
choo
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 1,268
Re: Parking Permits

I think there should be more paying for permits, but donít know if a straight auction would work because of some equity issues. But I do think those can be addressed and a big improvement on status quo can be made.

Re: restaurants - tough. The restaurants in Boston seem to be bursting at the seems everywhere so itís not stifling them. If you want to go out for Boston restaurants, take the t or pay to park. If youíre anywhere near downtown the building garages are like $8 for the night. I say this as a suburban car owner. No expectation to parking for a night on the town itís the cost of the night. And Boston benefits a lot more from the density and walk ability than any economic increase free street parking would create (if at all)
choo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 01:24 PM   #4
FitchburgLine
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Posts: 236
Re: Parking Permits

Matt Yglesias made some proposal for existing holders of permits to be allowed to sell them to newcomers, but to then not issue new ones- giving NIMBYs a financial stake in increased demand for parking.
FitchburgLine is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 01:52 PM   #5
CSTH
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 1,466
Re: Parking Permits

Quote:
Originally Posted by tysmith95 View Post

The biggest issue would be the initial implementation. No one wants to pay upfront for something that was previously free. A possible method would be to slowly phase it in, allowing current residents to keep their permits but not allowing them to sell it until the number of permits is reduced to the set number.
Agreed. There's potential, implementation is tough. One model with promise is to steadily increase an annual fee that's still payable to the city (up to a certain level, from which it would just increase with inflation), while also allowing permits to be bought and sold. That way its not just a windfall to current holders and an asset loss to the city.

There's then also the option of making the target for the 'up to a certain level' on the annual fee be a variable dollar figure that targets parking availability or another 'outcomes' metrics.

Also, would be interesting to see if some kind of secondary market developed - like, I could buy a bunch of permits in the back bay and then launch an app and / or partner with a valet company to monetize those on an hourly basis. In that scenario the city could stipulate that it recieve say 15% of any transaction involving a permitted space (including 'regular' permit ales from party to another). And that % fee could be supply-elastic ... i.e. it could go up to say 200% if during times when spot avaialbility was <5%.

There's a lot of cool ways to capture all the value the city is leaving on the table by giving valuable shit away for free.
CSTH is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 02:25 PM   #6
estyle
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 134
Re: Parking Permits

Quote:
Originally Posted by tysmith95 View Post
In many neighborhoods in this city, we know parking is a huge problem. Personally I think the abundance of free parking is the biggest problem, as space on the street should be sold for what it is worth.

My solution would be for the government to set a limited number of parking permits in each neighborhood, similar to how a liquor licence works. Then let the free market determine how much street parking is worth. Denser and wealthier neighborhoods like the Back Bay would have to pay a good bit for parking, while a poorer place like Mattapan would have to pay little to nothing.

This would also have the positive effect of reducing opposition to new housing. Probably the biggest neighborhood complaint to new housing development is the lack of parking. A limited number of parking permits held by residents would actually convince current residents to be in favor of new housing. Parking difficulty will remain the same, as there will be a set number of parking permits. However for residents who own permits, the value of their permit will go up when additional residents move into the neighborhood. Therefore the people who before would try to block the development of housing will now have a financial incentive to support new dense developments.

The biggest issue would be the initial implementation. No one wants to pay upfront for something that was previously free. A possible method would be to slowly phase it in, allowing current residents to keep their permits but not allowing them to sell it until the number of permits is reduced to the set number.
I'd be curious to know how the surrounding towns that ban overnight parking started doing so.

Phasing in limited parking seems like it could work, it could also just continue the drive for buildings that are all parking on the ground floor--see the lower end of Southie. IT all needs to go hand in hand with the MBTA providing a level of service that is closer to the demand.
estyle is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 02:25 PM   #7
bakgwailo
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2016
Posts: 565
Re: Parking Permits

I think even doing a nominal fee per permit, and capping the number of permits per household would go a long way.
bakgwailo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 03:26 PM   #8
Roxxma
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2006
Location: South End, Boston
Posts: 456
Re: Parking Permits

Residential permits should be tied to residents, not cars. Why shouldn't I, as a resident of my street, be able to park a Zipcar or rental near my home during my reservation? I have been ticketed because I parked a Zipcar in front of my place while offloading groceries. I am a resident, I should be able to park there as one.
Roxxma is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 03:42 PM   #9
fattony
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Davis/Ball Sq.
Posts: 1,533
Re: Parking Permits

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roxxma View Post
Residential permits should be tied to residents, not cars. Why shouldn't I, as a resident of my street, be able to park a Zipcar or rental near my home during my reservation? I have been ticketed because I parked a Zipcar in front of my place while offloading groceries. I am a resident, I should be able to park there as one.
I've never lived in Boston, so I don't know the rules there. In Cambridge or Somerville, the exact solution to that dilemma is a guest pass. Any resident can purchase one, whether or not you own a car. Does Boston offer such a thing?
fattony is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 03:57 PM   #10
Lrfox
Senior Member
 
Lrfox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 2,107
Re: Parking Permits

Quote:
Originally Posted by fattony View Post
I've never lived in Boston, so I don't know the rules there. In Cambridge or Somerville, the exact solution to that dilemma is a guest pass. Any resident can purchase one, whether or not you own a car. Does Boston offer such a thing?
I was just going to say this. 2-3 day guest passes are available for $20 or $40 (I believe, I only have the 2 day). Up to 2 per household. Lots of people who don't have cars still have guest passes. You just need to prove residency (whereas for a resident sticker, you need to prove that the registered vehicle is garaged at the address). They're easy to get and extremely useful.

The downside of the guest pass, in Somerville at least, is that it's only useful in the immediate vicinity of the residence so you can't use it anywhere else. They resident stickers are good all over the city.
Lrfox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 04:22 PM   #11
JumboBuc
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: The Fenway
Posts: 1,504
Re: Parking Permits

Technically, guest passes (in Somerville and Cambridge, at least) are not valid for use by residents. Of course nobody pays this any attention, but a resident using a guest pass on a car that he or she is operating (no matter how briefly) is misusing the pass and I believe this is grounds for confiscation.
JumboBuc is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 04:38 PM   #12
tysmith95
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: North Shore
Posts: 1,948
Re: Parking Permits

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roxxma View Post
Residential permits should be tied to residents, not cars. Why shouldn't I, as a resident of my street, be able to park a Zipcar or rental near my home during my reservation? I have been ticketed because I parked a Zipcar in front of my place while offloading groceries. I am a resident, I should be able to park there as one.
I believe if you're in the actual process of loading you wouldn't be considered parked. I know other cities have different designations for no stopping, no loading, and no parking, so if you're stopped and grabbing groceries you wouldn't be "parked" and could stop in a no parking zone. I'd assume that in a residential zone you can't park but you'd be allowed to stand or stop without a permit. Of course if you leave your car it would be considered parking and you could get a ticket.

No one in Boston adheres by this though, and it's not like other cities where they have painted yellow, white, and red zones.
tysmith95 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 04:38 PM   #13
tysmith95
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: North Shore
Posts: 1,948
Re: Parking Permits

Quote:
Originally Posted by JumboBuc View Post
Technically, guest passes (in Somerville and Cambridge, at least) are not valid for use by residents. Of course nobody pays this any attention, but a resident using a guest pass on a car that he or she is operating (no matter how briefly) is misusing the pass and I believe this is grounds for confiscation.
I'm not sure how that could be enforced. Although they could punish if the same car is seen with a guest pass more then a couple of times a month.
tysmith95 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 05:36 PM   #14
sm89
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Somerville
Posts: 648
Re: Parking Permits

Quote:
Originally Posted by tysmith95 View Post
My solution would be for the government to set a limited number of parking permits in each neighborhood, similar to how a liquor licence works. Then let the free market determine how much street parking is worth. Denser and wealthier neighborhoods like the Back Bay would have to pay a good bit for parking, while a poorer place like Mattapan would have to pay little to nothing.
The problem with it being "free market" is that it would favor those with lots of money. Sure, parking is less of an issue in Mattapan, and it also happens to be an area with lower average income, but that doesn't mean people with money issues aren't living in higher income areas and areas that are rapidly gentrifying.

Councilor Wu went on record this past October saying that the council would be looking into parking management this year, which may include instating fees.
https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/20...lIL/story.html
sm89 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 05:39 PM   #15
tysmith95
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: North Shore
Posts: 1,948
Re: Parking Permits

Quote:
Originally Posted by sm89 View Post
The problem with it being "free market" is that it would favor those with lots of money. Sure, parking is less of an issue in Mattapan, and it also happens to be an area with lower average income, but that doesn't mean people with money issues aren't living in higher income areas and areas that are rapidly gentrifying.

Councilor Wu went on record this past October saying that the council would be looking into parking management this year, which may include instating fees.
https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/20...lIL/story.html
My idea would be for the costs to affect new residents looking to move into the neighborhoods, not people already living there.

Of course implementation is the biggest problem. I haven't entirely figured out how to do it. For neighborhoods with a shortage of parking you could halt the issuance of new parking permits, although that could be an issue as some people do need a car. Maybe halt the issuance of new permits but allow hardship exceptions, or charge a large fee upfront (aka don't make it easy).
tysmith95 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 06:08 PM   #16
sm89
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Location: Somerville
Posts: 648
Re: Parking Permits

Quote:
Originally Posted by tysmith95 View Post
My idea would be for the costs to affect new residents looking to move into the neighborhoods, not people already living there.

Of course implementation is the biggest problem. I haven't entirely figured out how to do it. For neighborhoods with a shortage of parking you could halt the issuance of new parking permits, although that could be an issue as some people do need a car. Maybe halt the issuance of new permits but allow hardship exceptions, or charge a large fee upfront (aka don't make it easy).
Charging new residents only creates another barrier to entry. There are many affordable units being built that have no parking. Those would be affected by your proposal. I agree with Roxxma that it should be per resident, not per car.

I think the idea of the City Council is to start slow, like first permit per household is free, and then subsequent permits have a cost. See how that works.
sm89 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 06:12 PM   #17
tysmith95
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2016
Location: North Shore
Posts: 1,948
Re: Parking Permits

Quote:
Originally Posted by sm89 View Post
Charging new residents only creates another barrier to entry. There are many affordable units being built that have no parking. Those would be affected by your proposal. I agree with Roxxma that it should be per resident, not per car.
In my opinion a barrier to entry for automobiles is a good thing. People winning the housing lottery (aka knowing someone) and getting a fancy new affordable (below market rate) apartment also deserve free parking?!?

If someone wants affordable housing and needs (plus can afford) a car then they should live in a less dense area. There is no need to have a car in South Boston or the South End for most people.

Last edited by tysmith95; 01-23-2018 at 06:24 PM.
tysmith95 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 09:56 PM   #18
fattony
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Davis/Ball Sq.
Posts: 1,533
Re: Parking Permits

Quote:
Originally Posted by tysmith95 View Post
My idea would be for the costs to affect new residents looking to move into the neighborhoods, not people already living there.

Of course implementation is the biggest problem. I haven't entirely figured out how to do it. For neighborhoods with a shortage of parking you could halt the issuance of new parking permits, although that could be an issue as some people do need a car. Maybe halt the issuance of new permits but allow hardship exceptions, or charge a large fee upfront (aka don't make it easy).
That is probably unconstitutional. It fails equal protection. You canít just invent new criteria for discrimination. You are only allowed to discriminate the tried and true American way... economic discrimination through pricing.
fattony is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-23-2018, 10:49 PM   #19
dwash59
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Allston
Posts: 537
Re: Parking Permits

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lrfox View Post
I was just going to say this. 2-3 day guest passes are available for $20 or $40 (I believe, I only have the 2 day). Up to 2 per household. Lots of people who don't have cars still have guest passes. You just need to prove residency (whereas for a resident sticker, you need to prove that the registered vehicle is garaged at the address). They're easy to get and extremely useful.

The downside of the guest pass, in Somerville at least, is that it's only useful in the immediate vicinity of the residence so you can't use it anywhere else. They resident stickers are good all over the city.
Boston doesn't have guest passes though, which was the question.

What Boston does have are rental car passes for residents. The system doesn't really work well with ZipCar or weekend rentals though.
dwash59 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-24-2018, 07:43 AM   #20
Lrfox
Senior Member
 
Lrfox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 2,107
Re: Parking Permits

Quote:
Originally Posted by tysmith95 View Post
I'm not sure how that could be enforced. Although they could punish if the same car is seen with a guest pass more then a couple of times a month.
It's not easy to enforce, but it's also probably not that much of an issue. You either have a resident sticker ($40 - just as much as the 3-day guest pass), you have off street parking, or both (and this is often the case). So it's not necessary. My girlfriend's car is registered out of state (something else she could get in trouble for) but she has off-street parking. Occasionally she'll use the pass if she needs to make sure her car isn't blocked in the driveway before she's going away. Never an issue. I guess they could run the plate and run the permit number and match the name, but it's such an infrequent occurrence that it really doesn't seem to be an issue. Even new residents from out of state can obtain a "30-day new resident permit" for free. So they have time to switch stuff over.

With the guest passes you get 2 (or 3, depending on the pass) days total on the street per week (plus Sundays which are not enforced). You can't do 2 on, one off, 2 on. That's not really enough for most residents anyway. So it's not much of an issue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dwash59 View Post
Boston doesn't have guest passes though, which was the question.

What Boston does have are rental car passes for residents. The system doesn't really work well with ZipCar or weekend rentals though.
The guest pass was raised as a solution to the rental car issue. The point being that if Boston had something similar it would work really well for zipcars and rentals.
Lrfox is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Is parking too cheap? czsz Transit and Infrastructure 410 11-04-2016 12:24 PM
Structured Parking / Parking Garages Arlington Transit and Infrastructure 12 01-20-2015 02:49 PM
Red Sox Parking mass88 General 4 10-22-2010 09:21 PM
Free parking cneal Greater New England 6 12-13-2006 11:28 PM
Park in parking quadratdackel General 1 09-29-2006 06:40 AM


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:24 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.3
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.