New SFPark Meters Making Customers Pay

The SFMTA's new SFPark meters are working well -- perhaps too well.

By Chris Roberts
|  Saturday, Jan 7, 2012  |  Updated 8:04 AM PDT
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New Parking Meters Help and Hurt Muni

The new SFPark parking meters make it easier than ever to funnel money to the SFMTA for parking.

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More meters means more money from motorists -- and less problems for the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency.

The newfangled SFPark meters -- familiar to car-parkers stowing vehicles near Fisherman's Wharf, the Embarcadero and the Financial District -- are raking in the money, according to the San Francisco Examiner.

The new meters use variable pricing, which can range to $6 an hour and average $3.48 an hour, a 69 percent increase from the fixed-rate days of 2010, according to the newspaper. What's more, parkers can pay by credit card, which only helps the SFMTA to process payments and rake in revenue.

Rake in less revenue, that is: while the collection rates were on the rise at the SFPark meters, overall collection was down 35 percent, the newspaper said, good for a 3 percent dip overall in money collection from parking meters.

So: more meters equals more payments, but these meters also equal less parking citations, which equals less money. Don't be surprised if that in turn leads to higher meter prices. Now that's Muni math.

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