clown car

Everyone is always b*tching about parking.

You’ll probably be all mad at me and all. Especially since I don’t have a car. (In fact I don’t know how to drive.) But like, maybe YOU could drive less. It would be better for us all including the planet.

For an interesting prospective on parking you should check this book The High Cost of Free Parking by Donald C. Shoup his philosophy is that free parking is like a fertility drug for cars. The more free parking you have, the more people will drive their cars.

What are the true costs of this, to the environment, to our pocket books, to our sanity?

What are your thoughts about parking in your town? Click comments and leave one!

Elizabeth Fiend

The High Cost of Free Parking

a book by Donald C. Shoup

This book is a detailed analysis of parking problems and their solution. Shoup zeroes in on the reason for such problems: we assume that parking should be free. Shoup points out that if we decided that gasoline should be free, the result we would expect would be obvious: people would drive too much, shortages of gasoline would develop, fights would break out over scarce gas, and governments would go broke trying to pay for it all. Shoup shows that parking is no different.

Providing free parking leads to overuse, shortages, and conflicts over parking. Cash-strapped local governments and neighborhoods lose out, too. Free parking is like a fertility drug for cars. Many people don’t realize how much of the high price of housing is due to requirements by local governments that a certain number of parking spaces must be provided. These costs are paid by everyone, including those who don’t own a car.

More info.

One Response to “High cost of free parking”

  1. Valerie Says:

    Funny enough, just saw this today:
    In a Jan. 6th article called “Mayoring 101, from those who should know” on online mag, ex-mayor John Norquist of Milwaukee gives this advice to our own new Philly mayor Michael Nutter:
    “Phase out the job-killing wage tax and replace it with fuel, parking or land-value taxes.”
    I do own a car because I’m a freelancer and work all over. Given the choice between paying for parking and paying wage tax, I’d definitely pick the parking. Not commenting on the other two choices at this time. It’s too easy to be against taxes of any kind without thinking about the ramifications.
    ciao, VaLerie K

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