By Gabe Nelson : autonews – excerpt
SAN FRANCISCO — A prime downtown parking spot here costs $3.50 an hour.
Stay for 12 hours a day, and it adds up to $250 a week, or $13,000 a year.
Most car companies don’t worry much about the cost of parking, but in a garage under a San Francisco overpass, a group of BMW employees is figuring out how to factor those costs into a new business model. Three years ago, the company chose San Francisco for the U.S. debut of DriveNow, a car-sharing program that presages a future in which car companies won’t just sell cars — they’ll sell rides, one trip at a time…
Selling rides is sharing?
But the rollout in San Francisco has not gone as smoothly as BMW hoped…
In most cities where they operate, Drive-Now and archrival Daimler’sCar2Go users can pick up a car from the curb, drive across the city and park at any legal street spot. They can do this because those cities will sell DriveNow and Car2Go a “superpermit” — a master parking pass that serves as payment for parking meters and permission to ignore time limits.
San Francisco still has not granted a superpermit, after years of lobbying… (more)
It appears that BMW can only operate successfully with “superpermits” that allow their drivers to park in any neighborhood without or fear of getting a ticket. We all had that deal until 2012 when the SFMTA implemented their anti-car campaign by eliminating parking and traffic lanes.