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Release date: Jan. 5, 2012

*** Press Release ***

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA), which oversees all surface transportation in the city, including the Municipal Railway (Muni), today announced that during the first six months of 2011, prior to any meter rate adjustments, new meters with longer time limits resulted in fewer parking tickets and more meter payments as expected under the SFpark project. The findings were part of a recent study by the SFMTA. SFpark, a federally funded pilot project run by the SFMTA, uses new smart parking management technologies and pricing policies to make it easier and faster to park in San Francisco. Better management of parking will open San Francisco’s streets and result in cleaner air, improved safety and faster Muni times.

Through the SFpark program, the SFMTA has installed new, credit card-enabled meters at about 7,000 of the city’s 26,800 metered parking spaces since early 2010. The SFMTA also extended time limits at SFpark meters to four hours, and in some places time limits were eliminated altogether.

“We are pleased to see that the added convenience of the new SFpark meters and extended time limits have made parking in San Francisco easier,” said Edward D. Reiskin, Director of Transportation. “We’d rather have people comply with parking regulations than have to cite them for failing to do so. According to this data, SFpark is moving in the right direction, allowing us to better manage parking in a way that is fair, innovative and more efficient.”

The new meters and longer time limits make parking more convenient and had the following expected results:

  • Parking meter citations decreased 14 percent more at the new meters than at the meters that were not upgraded.
  • The new meters brought in 27 percent more net meter revenue (not including parking meter citations) than the older meters.
  • Adding together meter revenue and meter-related citations, the new meters generated about 11 percent more net revenue than meters that were not upgraded.

In 2012 the SFMTA will evaluate whether the new meters lower coin collection and maintenance costs, the effect of demand-responsive pricing, and will complete a more thorough evaluation of how SFpark affects overall parking revenues, whether from meters, citations, garages, parking tax or other sources. The SFMTA will also evaluate how SFpark helps to achieve broader goals, including minimum levels of parking availability, reducing congestion, and improving Muni reliability.

To download the report, please visit

The SFpark pilot covers 7,000 of San Francisco’s 28,800 metered spaces and 12,250 spaces in 15 of 20 SFMTA-managed parking garages. These garages and spaces are located in the following neighborhoods: Civic Center, Hayes Valley, the Financial District, SoMa, the Mission, Fisherman’s Wharf, the Fillmore and the Marina. The SFpark pilot is 80 percent funded by the United States Department of Transportation’s Urban Partnership Program and will run until summer 2012. and the SFpark Android and iPhone apps provide customers the ability to see parking availability and cost before heading out the door by providing location, high, low or medium availability and rate information for garages and on-street parking spaces within the SFpark pilot areas.

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