Saturday, August 25, 2007

The high cost of free parking

The Boston Globe:
Thanks to the work of UCLA urban planning professor Donald Shoup, we now know that the low meter rates lead to congestion, unnecessary fuel consumption, and additional pollution. It also allows parking entrepreneurs to make 20 bucks (or more) for the same 120 square feet of asphalt that the city is practically giving away.
In his recent book, "The High Cost of Free Parking," Shoup claims that curbside parking is a valuable resource that cities squander by "renting" for less than market value. The most obvious consequence is the lost revenue. If motorists are willing to pay $20 to park in a lot for a Red Sox game, why shouldn't the city charge the same amount, or at least something closer to the private rate than $1 an hour?
I'm not so sure. In Sharjah I get the feeling that more drivers would park in the driving lanes. People do respond to incentives. Not all drivers, but some who feel they are above the law. If there's no enforcement and no shame that is what will happen.



Post a Comment

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home