Photo: Flickr / CJ Isherwood
Earlier this year, the New York Post alerted readers to “the city’s first million-dollar parking space” and put the cost of the hot spot at 66 E. 11th St. into proper perspective: Purchasing it would be equivalent to paying a $115 ticket for illegal parking every day for 24 years.So you’re not a celebrity or camera-shy business mogul?
You might not be paying a cool million, but parking elsewhere can be pretty steep, too.
And the cost is only getting higher.
The cost of daily downtown parking in 56 prime central business districts across North America increased — with hourly parking rates growing by 3.7%, according to the Colliers International 2012 Parking Rate Survey, which included covered or underground parking garages.
These price increases are attributed to garage owners and operators using the growing demand for parking as an opportunity to impose modest rate increases.
The survey also found one city’s astounding hourly parking rate at as high as $40, while the average monthly U.S. median unreserved parking rate is $166.26.
Million-dollar spaces aside, it’s no surprise that it’s back to the Big Apple for some of the priciest monthly, daily and hourly parking rates in the country, according to the survey.
(Note: All of these numbers reflect the median parking rate in these cities, unless otherwise noted.)
Top U.S. Monthly Unreserved Parking Rates
The customer is guaranteed a space upon entry.
1. New York City (Midtown): $562
2. New York City (Downtown): $533
3. Boston: $405
4. San Francisco: $375
5. Philadelphia: $313
Least expensive among the U.S. cities surveyed: Bakersfield, Calif., and Phoenix, both at $55.
Most surprisingly high priced North American city? Calgary, Alberta in Canada. The average monthly parking rate there is $439 (in U.S. dollars). That’s the third highest price in North America, much higher than super-expensive U.S. cities such as Boston and San Francisco.
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Top U.S. Daily Parking Rates
The customer is permitted to park for a full day and is not affected by early-bird restrictions.
1. Honolulu: $42
2. New York City (Midtown): $38
3. Chicago: $35
4. Boston: $33
5. San Francisco: $29
Remember, those are the median rates; on the high end, parking spaces in Honolulu and Midtown Manhattan go up to $75 per day. The least expensive U.S. city in the survey? Greenville, S.C., at just $6 per day.
Top U.S. Hourly Metered Parking Rates
1. New York City (Downtown): $20
2 (Tie). New York City (Midtown): $19
2 (Tie). Chicago: $19
4. Philadelphia: $13
5. Los Angeles: $12.50
Those with money to burn can spend as much as $40 per hour in Midtown Manhattan. The cheapest? Again, Greenville, S.C., where the median hourly rate is just 75 cents. Two Florida cities — Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach — were next cheapest, at just $1 per hour.
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Top NFL Parking Rates
Beyond regular parking rates, prices tend to spike at popular events. Not part of the Colliers International survey — but football fans would say of equal importance — is which NFL team has the priciest pigskin parking. Here are the top five, according to the 2012 marketing team report from fancostexperience.com. (We won’t even get into what a cold beer and a hot dog will run you.)
1. Dallas Cowboys: $75
2. Chicago Bears: $49
3 (tie). New England Patriots, Green Bay Packers, Seattle Seahawks: $40
The NFL average cost for parking is $27.35.
The cheapest? Parking for an Arizona Cardinals home page will only run you $10. The Detroit Lions are next at $11, while the St. Louis Rams, Jacksonville Jaguars and Minnesota Vikings charge $15 to park.
You Have To Find A Spot First
While the price to park steadily increases, it seems like the odds of finding city street parking are decreasing. According to a New York Times story, San Francisco is attempting to reduce frustrating circling time by employing new technology and the good old law of supply and demand. The program raises the price to park on its most crowded streets while lowering it on its more desolate ones. The results have been positive.
Never mind the price, it’s having to parallel park at all, you say? There’s nothing like a narrow space and a line of impatient cars in the rearview mirror to add to the task.
Well, if you know your car’s turning radius, the distance between the front and the rear wheels, the distance of your front wheel to the corner of the front bumper and the width of the car you want to park behind, you’re in luck: A multistep geometry equation can tell you whether your car will fit. Easy as that. This comes from an NPR report, “The Formula for Perfect Parallel Parking,” which profiled University of London mathematician Simon Blackburn’s “The Geometry of Perfect Parking.”
No time for crunching variables? Then repeated practice it is. May China’s Han Yue, the world record holder for tightest parallel parking job, be your inspiration.
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