The Disputed Parking Territory of the Upper Haight

by by Amy Stephenson : hoodline – excpert

Parking in the Upper Haight has long been a hot-button issue for the community. Not only is the Upper Haight and Cole Valley home to about 21,000 people in only 30 square blocks, but the Haight’s also one of the most popular tourist destinations city-wide. With that much going on, every inch counts.

Last year, as you might recall, the city announced a pilot program to dedicate public parking spots to care share programs. We started with seven spots, but that number increased when the city moved into an expansion phase of the pilot, as we reported in January.

Since its announcement, the program has seen resistance in the Haight. Most recently, dissent has taken the form of a petition (the petition is a moveon petition) couching the pilot program as an attack on public space and the working class of San Francisco. As of this writing, it has 294 signatures out of 300 needed to get into the hands of Ed Reiskin, Director of Transportation, and MTS spokesperson Andy Thornley.

Per the petition:

“It is more expensive to rent a car by the hour than the day. If SFMTA decides they like the revenue this pilot program brings , the number of these private use parking spaces will increase from 450 spaces to 900 spaces city wide. They will no longer be available for your (public) use. Guess who profits.  [ …] These companies have misled the public into believing these actions will help save the environment, when in fact it will put more cars on the streets creating more pollution. This selfish corporate thinking compromises the local workers who need their vehicles to transport the tools of their various trades to the job sites.”

Another petition has sprung up in response to the first. It was created by Tim Wayne, a Haight Ashbury resident, a few weeks ago. Wayne believes that the working class in San Francisco do want car share spots, as a space gets used by more people if it’s for car sharing, as opposed to a single parking space for a private vehicle.  Wayne’s petition is short, but his Nextdoor post on his position was longer (posted with permission):

“For those of us who don’t own cars, we rely on the Muni. But, sometimes, there are errands for which the Muni just is not suited: trips to Costco, to Trader Joe’s, an emergency trip to the bank, etc. For these trips, there are by-the-hour carshare services like City Carshare.  For me, City Carshare is a god-send. City Carshare enabled me to not think twice about getting rid of my car. I use it about twice a week: once to run some errand and every Friday to take my dog to dog-agility class.”

To add to the parking spot kerfuffle, the Public Realm Plan, as we announced last week, will also be taking spots from the Haight, in order to install Muni and pedestrian bulbouts and parklets. According to Lily Langlois, 36 spots along Haight Street will be dedicated to the Public Realm Plan’s street improvements in its current draft. Looking just at Haight Street, that accounts for 8 percent of total parking from Central to Stanyan Streets.

Losing 36 additional parking spots has prompted some neighbors to reconsider the big picture of parking loss in the Haight. We’ve noticed a renewed interest in parking issues since the announcement of the Public Realm Plan in neighborhood social media groups, so we wanted to throw it to you. Is the loss of more than 36 parking spaces worth the potential community benefit of fewer cars and more public spaces? Tell us in the comments… (more)

Do sign those petitions that you feel strongest about and do write your comments on the source article.

Public Realm Plan

Hearing: Dedicated On-Street Parking For Carshare Vehicles

noevalleysf.blogspot – excerpt

There’s a hearing at City Hall tomorrow morning asking for public comment on dedicating certain on-street parking spaces to car share vehicles (Zipcar, City CarShare, etc.). In other words, you can’t park your car in those spots. Parking is a big deal to some in Noe Valley, so we were glad to get this from Heather World:

The city’s program to dedicate on-street parking to car-sharing vehicles leaps forward July 11 when residents are invited to comment on 100 proposed sites, including seven in Noe Valley.

Two spots are proposed for 22nd Street and Noe and for Clipper and Sanchez. One spot is proposed for 24th Street at Sanchez, 29th Street at Dolores, and San Jose Avenue and Duncan Street.

The pilot program is part of the city’s effort to improve congestion and encourage car sharing, said project manager Andy Thornley…

Here’s a link to more information about the Car Sharing Policy and Pilot Program, as well as a map of all locations in San Francisco [PDF]. If you can’t make the meeting you can send your comments to Andy Thornley(Note that Mr. Thornley is not a SFMTA employee; he is ontracted out by a corporate consultant hired by the SFMTA to oversee this handout to other corporate interests. Last we heard it was Serco.)

The July 11 hearing, hosted by the SFMTA Sustainable Streets Division, will take place at 10 a.m. in Room 416 at City Hall… (more)

What: Hearing about proposed sites for dedicated on-street carshare parking
When: July 11, 10am
Where: City Hall, Room 416

Keep in mind that Zipcar is owned by Avis. Our city is allowing one of its agencies to privatize our public parking spots for the exclusive use of Avis.

City CarShare To Run San Francisco’s Electric Bike Sharing Program

– excerpt

Electric bicycles are coming to San Francisco and Berkeley next year as part of a bike sharing pilot program approved by transportation officials Tuesday.
The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency board of directors gave the go-ahead for a $1.5 million grant toward an electric bikeshare program that will partner with City CarShare and the University of California at Berkeley Transportation Sustainability Research Center.
City CarShare is a Bay Area nonprofit member-based carsharing organization that serves San Francisco, Berkeley, Oakland and other East Bay cities… (more)

SFMTA adds to their CarShare franchise. Another $1.5 million for non-Muni expenses. Doesn’t look like Muni is as broke as they claim. When they need another million or two for one of their pet projects they can always find it. The neighborhoods that depend on Muni don’t count. SFMTA prefers to cater to the folks with the smart phones.

Shared cars eye slice of SF street parking

By Jerold Chinn : – excerpt

On-street parking spaces for car-sharing in San Francisco could see an uptick starting in September if a two-year pilot project gets approved by The City’s transportation agency board in June.
The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, which will oversee the pilot, would allow car-sharing companies like City CarShare and Zipcar to reserve 150 on-street parking spaces each and an additional 150 spaces the following the year… (more)

The SFMTA is planning to claim public street parking spots for “their” car-share programs, competing with “our” privately owned cars. Is this a conflict of interest or what? How can you trust an outfit that claims they want to help us manage our parking problem by reducing available public parking spots?