Dogpatch Joins the Rest of the City in Being Subject to Regulated Parking

in / by
X permits are being eliminated in Dogpatch this month. Photo: Steven Moss

This month, the Dogpatch Parking Management Plan, a long discussed set of San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency regulations intended to prevent extended use of street parking, will take effect. The scheme is supposed to increase access to the community’s 2,600 parking spaces for Dogpatch residents and customers of neighborhood businesses.

The plan was approved last spring by the SFMTA Board of Directors following two and a half years of consultation with residents, businesses, municipal agencies, and stakeholder groups, including the Dogpatch Neighborhood and Business associations. Under the regulations, parking will be restricted on most blocks in the community, encompassing 96 percent of available spaces. Prior to plan implementation only 20 percent of Dogpatch parking was controlled. The scheme establishes a new residential parking permit (RPP) area, EE, which’ll replace Area X east of Iowa Street.

In June, SFMTA began encouraging community members to purchase Area EE permits by mail instead of applying for renewal of Area X permits, which expire August 31, 2018. Residents can purchase one Area EE permit per individual; two for a single address. Inhabitants can apply for a waiver to secure up to four permits at one household with payment of additional fees. Permits for health and childcare workers don’t count toward the maximum number of certificates. RPP permits cost $136 annually; $67 if the permit area expires in less than six months. Motorcycle RPPs are $102 a year; $51 if the permit terminates in six months or less.

Under the plan, four-hour time limits, RPP, and metered parking will be enacted on commercial areas, including Third and 22nd streets, with four-hour time-limited parking on Illinois Street, except for blocks between 18th and Mariposa streets and 23rd and 24th streets, which’ll have meters. The industrial blocks between 23rd and 25th streets will have four-hour time-limited parking. RPP restrictions will be imposed between Mariposa and 22nd streets north of 22nd Street. Iowa, Indiana, 23rd, and 25th streets near the 22nd Street CalTrain station and the Muni Woods Division will be subjected to unlimited parking meters. Parking on Minnesota and most of Tennessee streets south of 25th Street will remain unregulated.

According to the Department of Public Works, there’ll be no changes to Dogpatch’s mechanical sweeping schedule.  “Street cleaning still will take place at night. Due to equipment and personnel constraints, we are not able to switch to daytime mechanical sweeping without adversely impacting other neighborhoods,” said Rachel Gordon, DPW director of policy and communications.  As Dogpatch continues to evolve DPW is likely to revise its timetables and routes. “We expect to acquire a new mapmaking system that will help analyze operational options. We do not have a timeline yet to complete that process,” said Gordon.

Meters and signage will likely be installed this month. “We’re waiting on shipments of meters and signs right now. We have to get them, inspect them, and install them. Once installation is complete, there’s always some clean-up afterwards, like moving a sign to a better spot a few feet down the block,” said Hank Willson, SFMTA parking policy manager.

Currently, about 1,300 SFMTA employees work across five different facilities in or near Dogpatch. In June, the Islais Creek Motor Coach Maintenance and Operations facility opened at Cesar Chavez and Indiana streets. The 8.3-acre bus yard attracts 300 additional operators, mechanics, and related positions to the area; SFMTA is working to address its employees’ transportation needs.

“There will be a shuttle to transport MTA and DPW employees from the 24th Street BART station down Cesar Chavez Street. It will run every 15 minutes and will stop at the DPW facility on Cesar Chavez, Islais Creek Muni yard, the Marin Muni yard, the Muni Metro East facility, Muni’s Woods Division, and Muni’s 700 Pennsylvania facility. It will run very early in the morning, picking employees up from the first BART train, very late at night,” said Willson.

According to Willson, the parking scheme may change after the Chase Center opens. “The Warriors arena, which is just outside the neighborhood, will obviously be a major traffic generator. The plan approved in April is not specifically intended to address the traffic that will be generated by the arena. It’s intended to address the parking issues already affecting the neighborhood and also to make clear that Dogpatch won’t be a place where arena visitors should expect to be able to park their cars on neighborhood streets,” said Willson, who added that SFMTA is evaluating existing regulations near AT&T Park and will work with the neighborhood to develop a proposal for special-event parking rules.

Parking restrictions will likely disrupt individuals who sleep in their vehicles. ‘The parking plan will require them to move along because almost all of the parking will be regulated,” said Willson.

Kelley Cutler, human rights organizer for the San Francisco Coalition on Homelessness, said Dogpatch is the latest area targeted for increased parking limits. “The City is creating fewer and fewer places for folks to go. We get calls from people whose vehicles are ticketed and getting impounded. Sleeping in their cars helps them from having to “sleep hard” on the street,” said Cutler.

According to Cutler, the City has provided no alternatives for people living in their vehicles. “The shelter wait list has over 1,000 people on it. The City has no safe parking programs. It’s something we have talked about with MTA multiple times, but it hasn’t happened,” said Cutler.

Cutler said people who sleep in their cars tend to park in areas that’re more isolated and industrial. “They want to stay out of the way, under the radar. It’s just frustrating because there are some really simple solutions to this dilemma. Why would someone give up their vehicle for a temporary shelter bed that might disappear? The people who can’t park in Dogpatch any more are likely to go to Bayview and Hunters Point,” said Cutler.

Cutler said many people who live out of their vehicles work. “There are also families who live this way. It is their last refuge,” said Cutler.

The plan is also expected to reduce parking options for University of California, San Francisco employees and students. As with other nonresidents, UCSF staff who work in or close to Dogpatch won’t be able to stash their cars close by for free during workdays.  According to Willson, UCSF pledged that the housing facilities it’s constructing in the neighborhood won’t be eligible for Area EE permits.

Michele Davis, UCSF associate director of community relations, said the university believes the parking scheme should benefit Dogpatch residents.  “As this plan helps neighbors address their needs, we encourage our staff to adapt to the new plan by decreasing reliance on their vehicles,” said Davis. “Instead of driving, staff may utilize the many ways UCSF encourages them to get out of their cars, such as taking UCSF shuttles, GoBike/Scooters, public transit, or a combination of modes.  Drivers (can) elect to pay for monthly parking in a UCSF garage, which is offered at competitive rates. Staff (can also) seek unrestricted parking farther away from campus and walk or take Muni,” said Davis.

To learn more about the plan, visit https://www.sfmta.com/projects/dogpatch-parking-management.