Ask the Parking Guru: Can You Get a Residential Parking Permit in a Non-Permit Zone?


Dear Parking Guru,
Can I get a permit for parking on my street where it isn't a residential permit area? I understand that they will be installing meters here and in other residential areas.  Any help would save us $ in meters and in parking tickets.  Do you think we should go to our Supervisor???  Any info you have would be most helpful.

Dear M.K.,
I have good news, bad news, and great news for you.  The bad news is that I checked your address, and you are not part of any residential parking permit area.  The good news is that you can still get a residential parking permit. The great news is that you are going to be a hero with your neighbors. You have 35 years of law and policy backing you up on this one. Your situation is exactly why the Residential Parking Program (RPP) was established in 1976: preserve neighborhood living within a major urban center. It is designed to promote the safety, health and welfare of all San Francisco residents by reducing unnecessary personal motor vehicle travel, noise and pollution, and by promoting improvements in air quality, convenience and attractiveness of urban residential living.
You have 3 options depending on your precise situation:
• You may petition to have your address (when it's on a metered block) to be included as part of a bordering residential permit parking area.
• You may establish an entirely new residential parking permit zone in your area.
• You may extend an already existing residential parking permit zone to include your area.
Residential parking permit basic facts:
You are eligible to purchase a permit for your vehicle if you live in an established residential permit parking area. A clear indication that you live in a permit parking area is if a 2-hour residential permit parking sign with a particular letter is displayed on your block.
Permits are also available for caregivers, company vehicles, carpools & vanpools, contractors, fire stations, foreign consulates, military personnel, students, and teachers in San Francisco.
Some addresses on metered streets are eligible where no residential parking signs are posted. If you are a resident in this area, establishing your street as a residential parking permit zone will save you a lot of time and energy.
Call the Traffic Engineering Division at (415) 701-4686. A block not currently part of an RPP (residential permit parking) area may be included in one through a petitioning and legislative process that takes approximately six months, but is well worth the wait.

How to establish a new Residential Parking Permit Zone in your area:
• The proposed block(s) must be contiguous to each other and must contain a minimum of one mile of street frontage.

• A petition signed by at least 250 households in the proposed area must be submitted to the Traffic Engineering Division (one signature per household). Blank petition forms can be obtained from the Municipal Transportation Agency's Traffic Engineering Division.

• At least fifty percent of the vehicles parked on the street in the proposed area must be non- resident vehicles.

• At least eighty percent of the legal on-street parking spaces within the proposed area must be occupied during the day.

• Legislation and sign installation process takes about six months from submittal of petitions for extensions and 12 months for new areas.
How to extend an already existing Residential Parking Permit Zone:
• The proposed block(s) must be contiguous to an existing residential permit parking area.

• A petition signed by more than fifty percent of the households on each proposed block must be submitted to the Traffic Engineering Division (one signature per household).

• At least 80 percent of the legal on-street parking spaces within the proposed area must be occupied during the day.

• Residents on a metered block may petition to have their addresses be included as part of a residential permit parking area.
 A maximum of four residential parking permits are allowed per single address. A permit will only be allowed for the address for which it is registered. Residents may file a request with the Executive Director of DPT to be considered for a waiver to obtain additional permits by sending a letter to:
Residential Permit Parking Office
11 South Van Ness Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94103

For questions regarding permit issuance: (415) 255-3900
For questions regarding permit enforcement: (415) 553-1631
For questions about anything under the sun regarding parking, or to get yourself a copy of the parking bible, or to email the parking guru, click here

It's no secret that parking in the city is a bitch. So we've enlisted local parking guru and author of  Finding the Sweet Spot, David LaBua, to dish out weekly tips on navigating the ins and outs of city parking.

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