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To reduce driving, let's improve the way we pay for the use of parking. Make the cost visible and optional. More choice;less driving.



On-road transportation is the largest category of greenhouse gas emissions. Given the parameters of our climate crisis, we cannot get the fleet-efficiency improvements soon enough to do the whole job needed so that this sector can support climate-stabilizing targets. We must drive less. We need many strategies, including this one.

We must mitigate the negative environmental impacts of bundled-cost parking. Although this is needed at all parking, the place to start is at an office, where the parking had been "free". To start, we need a demonstration project, to develop the software and the hardware and to demonstrate the driving reduction achieved. This will then become a  feasible mitigation measure under laws such as California's Environmental Quality Act (CEQA.)

Most employee parking is bundled-cost (AKA "free"). We can't expect to simply start charging for parking. The employees are already paying, whether they drive of not, by suffering a reduced wage. The answer is to create an overlay system, which operates the employee parking as a business, for the economic gain of the employees.

We need a demonstration project, to include automated car detection and efficient mailings of statements showing

  • charge,
  • earnings, and a
  • "must-drive" bonus,


 where the "must drive bonus" is sized so that no employee loses money under the new system. This would allow drivers to opt out if they choose. To them, it will still feel like "free parking"; to others, it will feel like an opportunity to get paid to not drive.


What actions do you propose?

Identify a set of employees. San Diego County employees may work because the County lost a Climate Action Plan lawsuit, in which, the scheme, as described by the Plaintiff lawyer, was called a feasible mitigation, by a Appellate Court Justice. The County is starting over on its CAP. There may be other cases where employers would want to use a grant to have a prototype system installed that will increase fairness and choice while it reduces driving to the work site.

Get a grant to fund the development.

Modify an existing report on this method to convert it to a Requirements Document.

Get proposals. I have identified a vendor that is willing to do the work but we need a fair process to select a vendor.