SF makes room for City Car Share vehicles

October 3, 2011 6:14:03 PM PDT
Parking in San Francisco just got a lot tougher in one neighborhood. The first shared car to live, in what was a public parking spot, was introduced on Monday.

Local non-profit City Car Share is paying $150 a month to make one space a tow-away zone. It is a spot that's now reserved for a blue Prius that those who pay a monthly fee can check out when they need it.

"There are times when you need a car. And speaking as someone who has no car and is married and has kids, it's doable in San Francisco because car sharing fills that gap," said San Francisco MTA Director Ed Reiskin.

Along with the one at Pacific Ave. and Taylor St., shared cars will show up at Polk St. and Greenwich St., Clay St. and Fillmore St., 38 Harriet Street, just south of Market and 17th St. and Valencia St., as part of a six-month pilot program.

Though shared cars are typically parked in big private garages, there are none in Russian Hill. So the mayor says some neighborhood groups asked for one street parking spot instead.

"They're willing to offer up in a very positive way their own spaces, that they've been competing for every single night, to be able to use car sharing as a philosophy," said Mayor Ed Lee.

When transportation planners first announced they'd be taking away a street parking space for City Care Share, some neighbors were not exactly pleased. But now one of them tells us he's changed his mind, even though this means one less spot for him to park his own car.

"When I park my car I usually park it there for quite some time. And for certain trips I take the Zipcar," said Russian Hill resident Francis Albar. When asked if this was because he didn't want to lose your parking space, he said, "Pretty much."

Albar says now he may switch from Zipcar.

"City Car Share right outside my house is actually pretty amazing," said Albar.

But electrician Jimmy Olson worries now he could have to park even farther away on jobs. He says the neighborhood is so tight on parking.


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