Goal: Improve short-term parking near Church Street.

A vibrant neighborhood is characterized by activity, social mingling, and access to goods and services. Upper Noe, with it’s many popular restaurants, shops, services, recreation center, and church/school, is a destination for all. Yet, our steep hills and lack of short-term parking discourages patronage.

Merchants have expressed concern about the lack of short term parking for customers. A shortage of parking limits access to goods and services for our neighbors, especially those who live uphill or have mobility issues. Furthermore, a new law AB413 will remove 4 spaces at every intersection, compounding the problem.

Options to consider include parking meters, time limit signs, parking permits, white zones, and green zones. To learn more, we invited Hank Willson, SFMTA Policy Manager for Parking & Curb Management to oour May 2024 meeting.

Q: How do we navigate the process of adding short terms to curb space? What is the notification process?
A: Neighbors and businesses will be notified of any changes being considered and a comment period will follow. Changes then go through engineering for design approval before going to an engineering public hearing and then to the SFMTA Board for final approval. The process takes many months.

Q: How do we measure our need?
A: The benefits and effects of changes wil be considered in the design process.

Q: What are the benefits and drawbacks to different options?
A: Some solutions are white drop-off zones, green 10-minute zones, signs designating parking restrictions, meters with time limits, meters with no time limit, parking permits, and Hayes Valley permit types. Parking permits don’t guarantee a parking space. They would not inhibit long-term parking on and near Church St by neighbors who have permits. They require a fee. Business owners can get a permit for themselves and for a fleet of up to 5 vehicles registered in their name but employees do not qualify. White zones and green zones require a fee. Parking signs are difficult to enforce; they require monitoring and chalking. One or two hour meters do not provide enough time to dine or do activities. Meters with 4 hour or no limits encourage overturning parking spaces while providing options for how people use their time.

Q: What options will discourage use of our neighborhood as a parking lot for commuters while maintaining some ability for local teachers and shop employees?
A: Meters with 4 hours or no limits.

Q: What is a good solution to provide parking for restaurant patrons in the evening?
A: All meters stop at 6 pm so they do not necessarily help restaurant patrons. SFMTA has considered extending meters into evenings and weekends.

Q: Valley Street angled parking currently has one hour parking from 9 to 11 a.m. Could we expand the time to 9 to 6?
A: That is an anomaly. Unsure how it came to be but is probably through an agreement with the church.

Q: What are current City attitudes about preserving parking/access to shops and services?
A: SFMTA is attempting to preserve access where possible. They were instrumental in modifying AB 413 to remove parking only on the approach side not on both sides of a crosswalk. Vision Zero goals continue to drive SF policy. Of 34 traffic deaths in 2023, 20 of them were pedestrians. The City prioritizes pedestrian safety over amenities for vehicles. Parking meter monies go to funding our transportation system.

SFMTA will assess the area and provide their recommendations. They were asked to evaluate the efficacy of 4-hour or no-limit parking meters, or other solutions at the spaces below.

Adjacent to St Paul’s Church and School­

  • West side of Church St between 29th St to Valley = 10 spaces less 1 for AB413
  • Diagonal parking on 29th along the school = 18 spaces
  • Diagonal parking on Valley along the school = 18 spaces

Day Street

Day Street south side has 14 angled parking spaces that could have meters. This idea appears popular with business owners.

On Sept 14, 2023
, Katy Tang and her team from the Office of Small Business (OSB) joined UNN for a tour of Church Street businesses. From their direct experience and observation, OSB identified short-term parking as being in short supply. They also heard from business owners who identified this as one of their major concerns.

On Oct 18, 2023, UNN met with Hank Willson, Policy Manager for Parking & Curb Management (SFMTA) and Marianne Thompson, Small Business Engagement Specialist (OSB) about short term parking solutions to support businesses. Some suggestions were to add more parking meters or 2-hour parking on Church Street and/or in other location that are not in front of residential property. Since then, a new state law, AB413, will remove at least several dozen spaces in the Upper Noe stretch of Church Street. This is an initial inventory of curb locations that are likely candidates for parking solutions.