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Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Would You Support Sunday Meter Enforcement?

BART Agent FAIL - Setting bad example

Parking meters in San Francisco. Yeah, you know those meters, the ones that a quarter only gives you eight measly minutes and you always have to keep a fat roll of quarters in your car. Or for you suckers who parks in downtown or those new “smart” meters, you get much less time for that 25 cents.

But if you are familiar with what’s going on now, this could be the moment when you’ll jump out of your chair and cheer or get really pissed.

Would you support Sunday meter enforcement?

It’s a difficult decision for the city to make. In one point of view, no meter enforcement on Sunday has been a tradition in our city, except around Fisherman’s Wharf where the Port of SF loves tourist pocket change 7-days a week, including holidays. In another point of view, the SFMTA is broke and needs money, and a bunch of churches are against the idea.

A Car Deserving to be Towed Away (License plate: CA WWHDD)

Here’s my thoughts about it. I’m really undecided if I would support it or not:

In support of Sunday meters:
Parking in popular neighborhoods is so bad on Sundays, you literally have to circle the block several times until you get lucky to score a parking space. Have you ever tried parking on Irving Street between 19th and 26th Avenues? It’s pure hell on Sundays; you have to make a choice, either park there before 9AM and do your shopping, or take a risk during the rest of the day to get parking while vultures are double parking just waiting several minutes for some car to back-out. At least with meter enforcement, cars keep going in and out of parking stalls all day long and that means a better shot for people to get their business done; this also means that businesses can get more brisk business on Sundays, instead of cars parked in a stall for more than a few hours.

Not in support:
Why is the SFMTA broke? Because the system is broken and their hairbrained ideas suck. We shouldn’t pay for the meters just to feed the wallets of SFMTA employees. It’s the same as raising parking ticket penalties, the MTA thinks it’s a good way to raise more money to fix their bloody red budget. If the agency stopped wasting money on stupid projects, such as the Rose Pak (Central) Subway, and giving out free Muni rides to all of SF’s youth, maybe this agency can stop leaching off our wallets. The more the SFMTA wants to take more money from our wallets, the citizens will get their revenge on election day with ballot measures to kick the agency’s ass.

It’s really a tough choice to make; break tradition to make more money and keep cars moving, or continue to maintain tradition. I’d support Sunday meters if the SFMTA can make an effort to provide improved public transit choices, like running limited bus lines like the 38L on Sundays.


David S. said...

I support Sunday meters. Parking is scare in this city, even on Sundays. Any fee would go a long way to making people use what we have more efficiently. It's not the city's prerogative to consider the effect of its clearly secular decisions on the cost of religious observance.

I would especially support it if only the new, smart meters got activated on Sundays. That would keep payment easy while easing up some of the most congested areas for Sunday parking.

Mario said...

Actually 38L on Sundays is part of the TEP and hopefully will happen soon. I think the tradeoff at the moment is unfortunately one of service cuts or parking meters, and service cuts go in the opposite direction (putting even more traffic on the street).

Willo said...

If Muni weren't so frustrating and often unreliable, I might, might, be able to get behind Sunday meters. But every time I take Muni instead of driving on the weekends, both in an attempt to be more environmentally responsible and to save the hassle of parking, I am left so angered and frustrated with the nightmare of getting home that I vow to never take muni again on a weekend if possible. And Sundays are the worst for Muni.

I honestly believe that parking wouldn't be such a problem if the experience on public transportation didn't drive people to, well, drive.

And as a former churchgoer, there's no way you can get up mid-service to go feed a meter. Sunday collections is just anathema.

Anonymous said...

Since others mention church activities, do churches pay when they privatize use of the road? Many churches attendees double park their vehicles in front essentially privatizing use of the street.

The south side of Page between Pierce and Steiner is a good example. Every Sunday and some weeknights, the entire length has double parked vehicles lined up in front narrowing the street to one lane. Perhaps they should be charged for permits just as other road closures like street fairs, construction activities, run/walk events, etc.