What’s going on with all the removed parking meters?

photo from the SFMTA of a parking meter on SF streets

Photo credit: SFMTA

In mid-December 2022, we, like many of you, noticed that thousands of parking meters were being removed all around San Francisco. Proper bike parking can be hard to come by in SF depending on what block, street, or neighborhood you’re in. For that reason, many people who bike regularly lock their bikes up to parking meters when unable to find a proper bike rack nearby. 

With many parking meters removed, we immediately began pushing the SFMTA to a) give transparency to the public on why many parking meters were being removed and b) recommit to their promise of increasing bike parking in SF. 

While we would have preferred that SFMTA had proactively planned to mitigate the impacts of meter removal before beginning, we do recognize that parking meters present challenges as bike parking: they provide only one point of locking (which is particularly challenging for larger bikes like family e-bikes), and they create accessibility issues for people who need to step onto the sidewalk from the street. For these reasons, we’re focusing our advocacy efforts on pushing SFMTA to install purpose-built bike parking faster, focusing on those neighborhoods impacted by the most meter removal.

In mid-January, after many discussions with the SFMTA, we were promised a plan from the SFMTA to replace bike parking capacity as they remove the meters. In response, SFMTA staff has identified a total of 125 locations for new racks to be installed in the next 1-2 months, and for greater transparency on these changes. 

Safe bike parking is essential to creating a more bike-friendly SF and shifting more people to taking alternative modes of transportation. 

We’re continuing to work with the SFMTA to ensure bike parking comes back more robust than ever. In the meantime, you can still request bike parking racks online. Request a rack at sfbike.org/bikerack

If you’re curious about why the SFMTA is removing parking meters, keep reading for their recent update.

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