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CALIFORNIA: SFpark Parking Management Program in the City of San Francisco

As part of the Urban Partnership Agreement, San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) will be implementing a comprehensive smart parking system to help manage congestion. This system will be used to better manage a significant portion of the City's parking supply, including: 13 city-controlled parking garages, one city controlled parking lot, and approximately 25% of the City's on-street metered parking supply. The primary strategies used to achieve the congestion-management goals of this program will be demand-responsive pricing to manage parking towards availability targets, enhanced parking regulation enforcement, and new parking information systems. These strategies will be supported by new technologies including networked in-street parking sensors and parking meters that support various forms of payment, including coins, smart cards, as well as credit and debit cards.

Project Status

In Operation

April – June 2017 Update

Quarterly rate adjustments for on and off street parking in SFpark pilot areas continue. The latest update was in February 2017. As of the February 2017 rate adjustment, SFpark pilot areas reached parking availability goals for 74% of all meter operating hours.

Planning for citywide expansion continues. Citywide outreach (to nearly every merchant group in the City) is nearing completion. Because the sensors used during the pilot have reached the end of their useful life, rate adjustments are now based on meter payment data, adjusted using a coefficient developed during the pilot period that compares meter payment data to sensor occupancy data. Tweaks to that coefficient are being finalized and programmed into the automated rate adjustment process.

The SFMTA is continuing discussions with third parties interested in partnering with SFpark to deliver real-time parking availability data. Delivering this data on one or more third-party platforms (mobile, in-vehicle navigation, etc.) would provide information to far more people than an in-house app developed by and for the SFMTA.

The SFMTA is updating its real-time meter-data API to facilitate direct machine-to-machine communication of meter updates, including rate adjustments. This will eliminate the often lengthy human-based reconciliation process between SFMTA's meter database and the meter management system used by the City's meter vendors, which will facilitate faster and smoother rate adjustments in the future. In addition, this API will be available for anyone interested in consuming them and including them in a parking space availability algorithm, or simply broadcasting the data to the public.

The SFMTA is nearing completion on implementing mobile contactless payment at all meters citywide, which would allow customers to pay for parking with their mobile phones. This technological advance will make it even easier for customer to pay for parking and avoid tickets. The SFMTA is nearing completion of its evaluation of over 200 meter-based parking sensors; the results of this evaluation will affect decisions about investments in parking availability technology in the future.

For More Information Contact

Hank Willson
San Francisco Municipal Transportation Authority

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