Car sharing encouraged during San Francisco holiday season

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- With activities like ice skating and holiday shopping, parking will be at a premium this season, but it's not because of more shoppers.

When they open the ice skating rink at Union Square, you know people are thinking about the holidays.

This year you may want to consider public transportation, walking or maybe car sharing.

Car sharing is becoming more popular and it's a program that is supported by the city of San Francisco, but where do you put some of these cars? Some live in the garages that the rest of us will try to park in if we come to Union Square. This isn't new, the city launched a pilot program about two years ago with companies like Getaround.

Getaround allows people to rent out their cars when not in use.

The number of spaces assigned to Getaround throughout the entire city is about 150 spaces. That includes spaces on the street as well as garages.

The city has assigned up to 450 again throughout the city. San Francisco officials like it because studies have shown that for every shared car, you are taking up to 10 other vehicles off the road. "One way we do that is being able to provide dedicated, both off street spaces in garages as well as dedicated on-street spaces, so that car sharing can actually be visible in those neighborhoods and that it could be accessible to citizens all across the neighborhoods,"

So, whats the impact on parking spaces downtown? Take the Sutter-Stockton garage it has more than 1,500 parking spaces and only 30 of those have been assigned to Getaround car share.

The city doesn't know if it will expand this program, but it is definitely encouraging the use of other means of transportation.
Copyright © 2021 KGO-TV. All Rights Reserved.