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What if you could auction off the right to park a car in front of your home?

Posted by on November 26th, 2013 at 3:57 pm

Auto parking on Southeast Division Street.
(Photos by M.Andersen)

Unlimited free on-street car parking is one of the big problems stopping Portland from becoming a better place to live, work, ride a bike, and do business — and a Portland planning expert is floating an interesting solution.

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Instead of the current system (taxing the public so the city can provide free on-street auto parking to everyone who wants it) or the simplest alternative to it (charging people whatever they’re willing to pay for auto parking, like we do downtown), city Planning and Sustainability Commissioner Chris Smith suggests a compromise: when a neighborhood starts running short of on-street parking, give everybody who lives in it a free, transferable pass to park a car in the area.

And here’s the interesting idea: if you didn’t need it, you could sell it to someone who does.

Unfortunately, this wouldn’t actually remove on-street residential parking. But by guaranteeing that everyone has at least one place to park, it’d make it easier for the city to make commercial districts more efficient by adding parking meters. And it might reduce homeowners’ resistance to the many apartments that are finally increasing the housing supply in bike-friendlier parts of Portland.

Smith is suggesting this only for neighborhoods where on-street parking isn’t yet saturated. And he notes that in the case of rental properties, policymakers would need to decide whether to award permits to landlords or directly to tenants.

Before we get into the details, what’s so bad about free, unlimited on-street auto parking? Let’s count the ways.

City leaders say Portland is short on industrial land,
then devote much of Swan Island to free auto storage.

1) It burdens businesses that have on-site parking. By driving down the market price of auto parking, tax-funded on-street parking forces businesses with on-site lots to give their space away for free. It’s a huge real estate expense that drives up the cost of doing business in the region (and is therefore passed on, in part, to customers and employees, including those who don’t use cars as much).

2) It burdens businesses that lack on-site parking. Free parking lots at competing businesses mean that businesses without on-site parking live in fear of parking meters, which would otherwise be a useful way to keep people from hogging curb space for hours at a time.

3) It eats up precious public street space. If every major corridor in Portland had an eight-foot buffered or protected bike lane on both sides of the street, we’d have the most direct and comfortable bike network in the Western Hemisphere and bicycle usage would soar, removing the need for lots of auto trips and saving lots of money for the local economy. Instead, we give most of this space for free to the city’s wealthiest transportation interest group: people who drive their cars everywhere.

4) It increases travel distances. If every block in a city were 16 feet closer to the next, it would take fewer steps and stops to reach every destination. (Sadly, it’s too late for this in Portland proper.)


Smith, however, doesn’t see charging for parking as politically viable. After all, heavy auto users may be the wealthiest transportation interest group but they’re also the largest. Instead, echoing national parking expert Donald Shoup, Smith writes on Portland Transport that the compromise might be to turn auto parking permits into an “entitlement” that could be resold by those who don’t use it:

“The City would never issue more permits than the capacity of the on-street environment.”
— planning commissioner Chris Smith

I think the way to get around the political objections is to entitle ALL incumbent stakeholders. To do that effectively, you have to do it BEFORE saturation. So perhaps we monitor our corridors/centers and when they hit 75-80% peak utilization we go ahead and give permits to all residential and business stakeholders (not visitors). We’d have to discuss whether the entitlement goes to the property owner or the occupant (renter). The City could hold all the ‘excess’ permit capacity and either release it on the market or distribute it for equity purposes.

The City would never issue more permits than the capacity of the on-street environment, including some reserve. Although theoretically the city might issue permits for more than 100% of available spaces based on complimentary uses (e.g., overnight entitlements for residents versus day-time rights for businesses). Visitors would need to be time-restricted or priced (meters).

Once entitled, folks could maintain their permit by paying an annual cost-of-service fee, or could sell their permit right on the open market.

As new properties get developed, the developers will either need to build off-street parking or face the market pressure that their purchasers/tenants will need to purchase permits on the open market.

Unfortunately we’ll need a different scheme for places that have already passed saturation…

What if the city wants to replace auto parking space with a sidewalk, or a bike lane, or a bus lane, or light rail? Would it have to buy the necessary permits back from the open market, having already given them away for free? See the discussion below Smith’s proposal for some nuances.

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Comments
  • Todd Boulanger November 26, 2013 at 4:20 pm

    I do support the end goal on this proposed…but I will have to think about the tools and carrots being proposed…

    Some loose ends immediately come to my mind (perhaps Chris’ full proposal has addressed these):

    1) there would need to be some level of value retention by the City/public in order to not bankrupt future safety and mobility projects …since those storing their private property in the right of way (parkers) did not fully fund that asset (much as was done in communist countries when they converted (monetised) and sold public businesses and property to the private sector.

    In my experience, much of the high cost of most conventional bike and pedestrian projects being retrofitted into existing urban streets is the prohibition of effecting parking supply or parking layout. Removing parking is often the best way to “value engineer” a project assuming the on-street parking in not a local code requirement, etc.

    2) additionally most if not all private residences were built with a code requirement for some off street vehicle parking, so this future system would have to enforce the actual use of garages and driveways for the storage of motorised vehicles or deduct such from the permits issued per property owner.

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  • Todd Boulanger November 26, 2013 at 4:24 pm

    And there might be unintended effects…so the tools should foresee that some property owners with rear alley access might also choose to add a driveway along their front or side (if on a corner) curb so as to enhance their off street vehicle storage…but each new driveway takes 1 to 2 on-street vehicle storage spaces away from the public supply…

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  • Bjorn November 26, 2013 at 4:28 pm

    Unfortunately this idea only continues to promote the idea that people own the parking in front of their homes.

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    • Dan Morrison November 26, 2013 at 4:45 pm

      It’s public right-of-way. Just because it’s in front of your home or business does not mean it is yours. I don’t know how people with the wherewithal to sign a lease, get a mortgage, or own a business do not understand that simple fact.

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      • gutterbunnybikes November 26, 2013 at 8:25 pm

        I agree totally, I know at my house in SE the public right of way extneds well into my front yard, even past the side walk. As the property owner (well I’m paying a mortage) I know fully well that I have absolutely no say what-so-ever in what the city can do on the road or the rest of the right of way for that matter.

        Don’t kid yourself. When “they” talk of needing input from “business owners”, that really means they need to talk to the people that own the buildings which lease the spaces to the businesses. For the most part these are not little Mom and Pop shops but large real estate holding and development companies, who have the money and influence to make or break political careers. It’s not consulting, it’s asking the boss if it’s ok.

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        • paikikala November 27, 2013 at 8:40 am

          You can’t sell something you don’t own. The ‘city’ doesn’t own most ‘public rights of way’. The city is using public rights of way for public good, and if the city no longer needs a public right of way, it is usually ‘vacated’ and returns to the use of the adjacent, fronting, property owner.
          If the best use of a parking lane would be a bike lane, then it should be repurposed to a bike lane.

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  • Chris Smith November 26, 2013 at 4:51 pm

    A few points of clarification:

    1) This is NOT a full proposal, just spitballing in the comments section of my own blog!

    2) But the idea of dealing with local stakeholder opposition to intensified development in a district by ensuring that folks who had access to parking before hitting some threshold of use get to retain that access is a very serious suggestion for a political strategy.

    3) I’m not suggesting enshrining the right to park in front of your house (or any particular space), just somewhere in a defined district.

    Have at it!

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    • Bjorn November 26, 2013 at 5:01 pm

      I’d feel better about this if it was proposed more as a temporary system during a transitional period. Like if the permits were for the first 10 years and then they expired and everyone had equal access to metered parking and or paid garages, like it is downtown already.

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    • paikikala November 27, 2013 at 8:44 am

      If you’re not buying the right to park in front of your house, then how does the city pay for the space where it wants to put a bike lane?

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    • JV November 27, 2013 at 10:31 am

      There is already a Parking Permit system in many parts of downtown – the annual cost is just way too low. It is only $5 per month in some areas like around Jen Weld Field. Day-long visitor passes are $1 per day. What would perhaps work better is a tiered rate, where the permit fee increases steeply based on the number of vehicles per household, or there is a block of parking passes that are auctioned after a 1-per household opportunity to buy at a fixed rate. There could be an income-qualified discount if needed to address equity issues.

      Compared to other cities we have a ton of streetside parking – our Portland residential blocks are small and there is excess capacity in all of SE. The people who are complaining about parking just do not realize how real cities and density works; they want the convenience of living in the city with the auto-entitlement of suburbia. In my opinion the solution is to make lots more one-way streets in SE residential neighborhoods going N/S, and make parking-buffered bike lanes with the extra road capacity.

      I am in full support of putting a price on parking, but it must be done in a way that does not encourage people to take “ownership” of the public right of way. Already that is definitely happening around Division, as people get orange traffic cones and various pseudo-official signs that seem to imply a parking entitlement. If people in residential neighborhoods want to own their parking, then they need to provide it on their own property. I say this as a resident of SE in a household with multiple cars, which are parked most of the time. So I am talking about adding costs that I am gladly willing to pay or adjust my lifestyle to, not just ones that I want others to shoulder.

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  • aaronf November 26, 2013 at 5:02 pm

    What happens when I drive to visit a friend in a permit-only neighborhood? Where can I park?

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    • Sam November 26, 2013 at 5:23 pm

      The way i’ve seen this work elsewhere is that each household can purchase 1 or 2 guest parking passes (or maybe more, I’m not sure) each year, and then if you are visiting someone’s home, you just stick the guest pass on your rearview mirror while you are visiting them. This of course raises additional revenue for the city, and gets around the problem. I realize a flat fee for the parking passes is not equitable – since wealthier households could purchase more guest passes than poorer households. so that would need to be factored in as well.

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    • q`Tzal November 26, 2013 at 9:35 pm

      Certainly it would be polite of your friends or family to mention this before you arrive, the bit where parking is so tight that you might want to think of a different way to get there.

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    • Schrauf November 26, 2013 at 9:56 pm

      Visitors can usually park in the same spots as permit parkers. If you don’t have a permit, you are time-restricted or pay a meter. Sometimes both.

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    • Chris Sanderson November 27, 2013 at 8:02 am

      If I remember correctly, in San Francisco, they allow 2-hours of parking in a permitted area. Indeed, that’s not a lot of time to visit a friend. That said, when I lived there, and owned a truck, I never drove to visit a friend in a different part of town. I took the bus or rode my bike, since that was more convenient than taking the risk of losing my parking spot to go find another parking spot.

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    • Dan Morrison November 27, 2013 at 8:38 am

      In Chicago’s permit-only neighborhoods, residents are allotted a certain amount of guest parking permits each month that you pick up from your alderman’s office. It works great, but there isn’t a single neighborhood in Portland that nears the crowding of any of the permit neighborhoods in Chicago. I think this Portland parking controversy is a tempest in a tea kettle.

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    • was carless November 27, 2013 at 2:29 pm

      You don’t, or there can be 1-2 hour parking spots. I believe Goose Hollow does this?

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  • dwainedibbly November 26, 2013 at 5:27 pm

    Instead of giving those passes to the people that live in the neighborhood, the city should sell them at an increasing cost. The first one is $10/year. Every one after that goes up by some percentage, say 25%. By the time you get to the last one, they’re very expensive. And, make them non-transferable and non-renewable. Fight for a new one every year.

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    • Dan Morrison November 27, 2013 at 8:40 am

      Should we do this with bicycle lanes too? They’re both public uses of a public facility.

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  • danny November 26, 2013 at 5:28 pm

    what happens when you sell your house after you’ve sold your parking pass? I guess you’d have to sell it as is, no parking pass. it’s only free to park in my neighborhood for 2 hours, otherwise you need a zone parking pass that you pay a fee for – they should probably jack that fee up a lot.

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  • dwainedibbly November 26, 2013 at 5:31 pm

    This “free pass” idea would absolutely kill any chance of ever removing on-street parking for bike infrastructure or anything else because it would vastly increase the sense of entitlement by area automobile owners to using that space for vehicle storage. And if you want to really kill the idea of removing on-street parking, do this right after you approve a large amount of no parking apartment units.

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  • joel November 26, 2013 at 5:36 pm

    a large amount of portlanders have a driveway or garage but decide not to use it. if their street parking were taken away they may lose their storage room but they would certainly have an option. Im talking about the east side. Our streets are so huge and full of room… however narrower streets with more obstacles make people slow down.

    I think the city would lose by selling public property, effectively auctioning off more of the commons, by giving more rights to the streets. i think this is an aweful idea. if you want your home to have parking- move to a place with parking.

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  • John Liu November 26, 2013 at 7:21 pm

    The post seems to mix together commercial and residential areas. These are separate situations.

    Commercial areas: usually these have businesses that need to be visited by customers. The large majority of people travel by car. Sometimes they have to, for reasons of physical ability, distances traveled, or what they need to carry. Usually it is because they simply want to, which is just as valid a reason. Who are cyclists to dictate whether other people may or may not drive? Who made us king? So, businesses need parking. It cannot all be off the street, because we’re not building a new city from scratch here. A lot of it has to be on the street. So, the only remaining question is, should it be free or metered. There are various considerations but I think the main one needs to be what is best for the businesses in the commercial area. Thriving businesses employ people, failing ones don’t. Ideology about the street being a “public good” is interesting in the abstract, but the practical goal is thriving commercial districts.

    Quiet Residential: In the typical quiet neighborhood street, there is no need for bike infrastructure, so no conflict between cycling and street parking. Again, some may for ideological reasons feel that city streets are public goods and no-one should be able to use public goods without paying – an odd view to hold as you ride on the public good (street) without paying tolls – but anyway that debate has no practical relevance to cycling, in those quiet neighborhoods with no need for bike infrastructure. (Wait, you say, you pay for that street through your taxes? So do all those residents.)

    Busy Residential: Now here is the tricky situation. In some residential streets, cyclists would greatly benefit from bike infrastructure, but there is no room for that infrastructure unless the neighborhood’s street parking is removed. What to do? Like many dilemmas, these require the various interests to be weighed and balanced. Every house has a big driveway and a double garage so hardly anyone actually parks in the street, while cyclists are being buzzed constantly and maimed occasionally by 40 mph traffic? Easy answer. Few houses have driveways and almost everyone is forced to park in the street, while cyclists can manage okay if we use speed limits, signal timing, traffic calming, and signage to slow traffic and educate drivers about co-existing with pedalers? Easy answer, in the opposite direction. In the gray in-between zone? Tough call, our city planners will have to do their best and we as cyclists and/or residents need to speak up too.

    I hope this website doesn’t become an insistent advocate for broad street parking eradication, just as I hope it doesn’t become an insistent advocate for income redistribution, rent control, broad equity goals, or anything else not directly pertinent to cycling. In a previous thread, it was stated that this website’s principal mission is to be a cycling-focused news source. I think that draws all the site’s readers here. By natural and unavoidable extension, this site has also become an advocate for cycling and cyclists generally. I think that is also welcomed by most readers. As the posts and topics move farther and farther afield from cycling, I think they belong here less and less.

    The original post is, I feel, one of those “afield” ones. The quoted person (Smith) doesn’t propose anything to do with bicycles or bicycling: his proposal is simply that street parking be converted to transferable private property. Then the post author (Anderson) makes some points about the need for more bike infrastructure, but his two lead points #1 and #2 are based on the supposed economic impacts to businesses of having off street parking and/or not having off street parking (somehow, they are both bad). Whether you agree or not, there’s no bicycles in the logic.

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    • Greg November 26, 2013 at 8:51 pm

      This article is about transportation and the use of the public commons we call the road, which means it absolutely involves people using all modes of traffic, including people on bikes.

      Every time my community wants better bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure, we hear loud and clear that while safety is important, we can’t take away parking.

      I am glad that BP covers these issues, and I hope they continue to do so.

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    • Paul November 27, 2013 at 10:15 am

      You left out public transport which is often the mode of choice for disabled people. And parking has an incredible impact on what transportation choices we make. So I think it’s a very relevant idea to parking, whether I agree with it or not.

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      • Paul November 27, 2013 at 10:16 am

        *** Sorry, last sentence should have read “So I think it’s a very relevant idea to bicycling, whether I agree with it or not.”

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    • Michael Andersen (News Editor) November 27, 2013 at 11:51 am

      Hey, John Liu – I hear you and I agree that every post on BikePortland needs to be about biking. Jonathan and I are constantly talking about where the lines are and whether something fits with our coverage. I agree that this post is less directly about biking than many posts are.

      For me, though, this proposal is closely related to biking and worth coverage here, for two main reasons: first, because a city where things are close together is a city that’s good for biking, and one of the main things that’s preventing more proximity in Portland is its dependence on auto parking. Second, because the city’s decision to devote public street space to car parking is the main obstacle to bike facilities throughout the city.

      There are other connections, but those are the main two.

      That said, thanks very much for the thoughtful feedback. It’s useful and always welcome.

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      • Howard Draper November 28, 2013 at 11:00 am

        Here’s another vote in favor of more articles like this. I like the broader context, and everywhere I imagine a new bike facility, there’s always parking in contention. The elephant on the street.

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    • ED November 27, 2013 at 2:11 pm

      I wanted to respectfully disagree and to vote for more coverage like this, that specifically addresses the intersection of transportation (by bike and other means) and planning. One of the things I like best about BP is that Jonathan and Michael and others get the bigger policy picture, and don’t just focus on the weekend’s cycle-cross results or new types of spandex.

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  • Trek 3900 November 26, 2013 at 8:46 pm

    This is probably not the stupidest idea ever, but it is on the list. Leave the parking alone. If the commissioners want to be strung up by the gonads, let them propose reducing available on-street parking: the voters WILL string them up. The more on-street parking the better. People will not choose to ride a bike just because it is difficult to park – they’ll just get pissed off as they have to walk 3 blocks to their car in the rain.

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    • Mindful Cyclist November 27, 2013 at 9:41 am

      “People will not choose to ride a bike just because it is difficult to park”

      If parking was “free” and convenient at PSU when I was going there, I probably would have driven my car. However, since it was not neither, I chose to take public transportation or ride my bike. I was not the only student that did the same thing.

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      • Mindful Cyclist November 27, 2013 at 12:28 pm

        Sorrry for the typo. “since it was neither”. Ignore the not.

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      • Dimitrios November 27, 2013 at 9:15 pm

        This mirrors my experience at OHSU as well. I planned on driving a couple days out of the week, but parking is expensive and demand exceeds supply. Biking ended up being the most dependable form of transportation. No traffic jams/crashes to worry about, no searching for parking spaces, I’ve saved some cash, and my fitness is excellent from riding the hill everyday. Nearly 100% bike-commute rate, except for a couple days I took the bus.

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  • q`Tzal November 26, 2013 at 9:38 pm

    Would it be legal to lease my parking space when crazy event traffic brings in hordes of Car Head suburbanites?
    Would it still be legal if I’m pricing it at $20 a space for just that night’s event?

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  • ed November 26, 2013 at 10:11 pm

    Maybe this could be combined with parking meters? Put meters everywhere, then give residents a free permit. Over time, start charging for the permits too. Eventually everyone is paying for their parking.

    I really hate the way Americsn cities offer free on street parking by default. Whose bright idea was it to builf every street twice as wide as necessary and then give it away???

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    • BobBobberson November 27, 2013 at 5:59 am

      My parents live in Savannah and you couldn’t park on street downtown at all w/o paying for parking. It’s only $175 a year. Feels perfectly normal to everyone there. Parking meters seem to have ‘always’ been there. My parents own one car and it’s not a big deal as the pass is still cheap, but it still costs something so the system discourages abuse.

      http://www.savannahga.gov/index.aspx?NID=776

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  • Jayson November 27, 2013 at 8:13 am

    What a horrible idea. Street parking is a shared public resource. If only one person is entitled to a street parking space, it’ll be wasted most of the time. The City needs to get real and start charging for street parking spaces in congested areas, like it’s done in other communities around the country. Professor Shoup argues that these funds should be re-invested in the community that is paying for the parking – things like bike, ped and transit facilities. Smith’s proposal would basically privatize those spaces and if spaces are sold, rented or leased, the income would go directly to private individuals instead of re-investing into the neighborhood. [shakes head]

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  • Chris Smith November 27, 2013 at 10:00 am

    Just to be very clear, I am NOT proposing that you get a permit for a particular space. Just the right to park (for residents, probably overnight, enforced say from 2am-5am) in a given district, where other folks don’t have that right.

    It’s a hunting licence, not a reservation.

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  • SteveG November 27, 2013 at 11:35 am

    Interesting idea, Chris.

    However, as you know I think it would be a lot easier — and meet a lot less opposition — to first propose a rule that legalizes renting out one’s personal/private driveway.

    A lot of residents of congested areas (e.g. NW Portland; Pearl District; CEID; Buckman; Richmond) could earn some extra income by renting out their un-used driveways and/or underground parking spaces during the workday.

    This would free up more on-street space for shoppers without building parking structures. It would also create a constituency in favor of increased on-street parking rates, because the higher the ROW rental fees, the more the private driveway owners could charge.

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  • Alexis November 27, 2013 at 3:01 pm

    The main thing I don’t understand about this is that it seems to be presented, given the quotes used, as an alternative to charging for parking. But in actuality it is identical to charging for parking, it’s just implemented so that the resident isn’t the payer. The price of the parking is whatever the open market will pay for the permits. The original owner is given this value for free, which seems to me to be a tacit acknowledgement that they have some kind of right to it (which in my opinion they don’t). Just that aspect of it alone argues against it, to me.

    Our existing permit parking operates in a similar way, which is one reason I don’t especially like it. The implicit statement is the same: since you can apply for a permit in a permitted area only if you live there, only residence gives you the right to claim that value. We believe that you have a greater right to it than a commuter who wants to park there. It’s true that the proposed system allows you to transfer that value, but it still gives you first right to it. Why? If the parking is truly more valuable to you than to someone else, then you should be willing to pay more than that someone else would for it. Otherwise, you shouldn’t receive the value at all.

    Just a little radical capitalistic thought here.

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    • Chris Smith November 27, 2013 at 7:22 pm

      Alexis,

      My thought in floating this idea is that we want to manage the transition from on-street parking being managed as a commons to being managed as a market good (actually a regulated-market good). Without some transition strategy, it seems clear from current and past examples that there is extreme political blowback against intensified development, driven I think, in large part by people fearing losing (free) access to on-street parking.

      The solution I’m floating here is to transition the commons to a (regulated) market good, but shield incumbent users from the initial price.

      My policy rationale (or perhaps rationalization) is that the intensified development and its parking impacts are in fact an externality imposed on this set of users. Of course, I believe the intensified development is an improvement for the general interest (more sustainable land use patterns, more housing affordability of the long term, etc.). So this is a value transfer from the general populace who receive the long term benefits to the set of individuals who will bear the short-term pain.

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      • Chris Smith November 27, 2013 at 7:24 pm

        Note that my scheme initially privileges the incumbent users but does NOT (necessarily, depends on the specific regulations created) prohibit someone from outside the district from acquiring the right by purchasing it on the market.

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  • John Liu November 27, 2013 at 3:21 pm

    SteveG
    Interesting idea, Chris.
    However, as you know I think it would be a lot easier — and meet a lot less opposition — to first propose a rule that legalizes renting out one’s personal/private driveway.
    A lot of residents of congested areas (e.g. NW Portland; Pearl District; CEID; Buckman; Richmond) could earn some extra income by renting out their un-used driveways and/or underground parking spaces during the workday.
    This would free up more on-street space for shoppers without building parking structures. It would also create a constituency in favor of increased on-street parking rates, because the higher the ROW rental fees, the more the private driveway owners could charge.
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    Is that not already legal? If you want to park in my driveway and pay me for the right, what stops us from doing so?

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  • Ted L December 2, 2013 at 9:15 am

    I would encourage all readers of Bike Portland to give Chris Smith’s (which is derived from Donald Shoup’s concept of a ‘parking benefit district’) a genuine consideration. This is how we will begin to shift Portlander’s sense of entitlement around driving and parking in the City. There appears to be a lot of confusion about what Chris is proposing and so I encourage you to read his full post before you pass judgement on it.

    This proposal in no way jeopardizes future bike/ped improvements. If bike and ped advocates could get together on a proposal like this, we could create an environment for innovation in bike-ped network connectivity AND create a funding stream to fuel it. There is way too much attention on the site-by-site, neighborhood-by-neighborhood improvements today, and not enough on system-level shifts like what Chris is proposing.

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  • Alan Durning December 2, 2013 at 11:27 am

    I’m delighted to see this discussion. It’s an idea that seems essential to me, as I’ve written here: http://daily.sightline.org/2013/10/04/curb-appeal/

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  • kww December 2, 2013 at 1:55 pm

    Interesting concept, and while I think I know the answer to this one, I will float this idea out for consideration:
    My house is adjacent to a commercial zone, with a large retail food market whose parking overflows to my property frontage.

    Part of the benefit of living across the street from the market is the convenience of shopping there.

    Part of the INconvenience of living next to the food market is living with people who park on my frontage who then litter on my lawn with product packaging from the market.

    It would be great if I had rights to the parking along my entire frontage (I mean all the curb length along my property), which I could then auction off to the food market (since their customers use it anyway). Heck I would even exchange it, if they put up a garbage can and collect the refuse that their market generates every week.

    So would a property owner have parking rights to the entire curb length of their property, or just one or two spots?

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  • Pat February 1, 2014 at 4:53 pm

    Along the same lines, I live directly across the street from a park with a soccer court and the goal is right next to my house, can I charge people everytime they make a score?
    In all seriousness, people who live in tight parking neighborhoods have no special right to any parking over any other citizen and more than I have a special right to use that soccer field. Parking passes in all neighborhoods that need it, just like parking meters, should be available to any1 who’s willing to pay for them, otherwise people who live in places like Nob Hill, who don’t need cars, will use the street as a storage location for a vehicle they barely drive and prevent people form other neighborhoods from visiting these neighborhoods. And, since these neighborhoods tend to benefit greatly from regional tax dollars in terms of PDC dollars, it seems only fair that all who want to enjoy them, should be able to do so.

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  • Bob April 27, 2014 at 5:39 pm

    Complaints rise in direct proportion to the square of the increase of number of blocks people must park from their destination. The solution to any market demand is not to squeeze down, but to increase the supply.

    Do the math, Bunky. Is not our City Council being paid to make rational decisions? But being rational is mistaken for having a rationale to do whatever you like. And isn’t that the same thing as rationalizing?

    I think the Council needs to get back to being rational. Don’t generate Boogermen out of phony fears for the future. We’ve had enough of that already. Do the simple math. And take serious steps to meet the demand. This business of permitting dozens of apartments with only a handful of parking spaces is NOT being “sustainable”.

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