Parking Is Sexy Now

Asbury Park and cities all over the world acknowledge that parking has to come with a higher pricetag, and that walking, bicycling, and alternative and mass transportation must be incentivized and supported.

Parking Is Sexy Now. Thank Donald Shoup.

In an interview, the guru of progressive parking policy reflects on his decades of research and writing, which transformed how cities look at the curb.

LAURA BLISS May 30, 2018

Thanks to Shoup and his many students, we know that cars cruising for on-street parking in American downtowns account for roughly 1,825 vehicle-miles traveled, for each curb space, every year—two-thirds the length of the country. We know that parking covers an astonishing percentage of urban land area (14 percent in housing-crunched Los Angeles county); that parking inflates the cost of housing and goods because developers fold it into property costs; and that when the city foots the bill for “free” parking, it’s a public subsidy to the affluent—non-car owning people are gifted no such real estate.

The High Cost of Free ParkingShoup’s 2005 book, is often called “revolutionary” for turning an otherwise dry academic topic into a high-stakes urban issue. In the 500-page follow-up, Parking and the City, Shoup compiles and reviews the newest research on parking’s oft-invisible effects. He also shows the way to rein them in. Through real-world case studies and research projects, Shoup makes three central recommendations for cities: eliminate planning codes that require developers to build off-street parking, charge the correct prices for on-street parking throughout the day, and spend parking meter revenue to make visible improvements on metered streets.

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