NYT_parking_lede.jpg

What’s the one thing above all else that keeps you away from Sixth Street? The drugs, the violence, the dirt, the six lanes of pedestrian-antagonistic freeway-style traffic?

Er, no. According to NY Times writer Scott James’s article entitled “A Neighorhood’s Revival Smothered By Parking Rules”, it’s the lack of parking. Because we would all rush en masse on down to 6th Street if only we had the opportunity to leave our car unattended on the side of the road* for a few hours.

We’re not sure why Scott feels entitled to a taxpayer-subsidized parking spot on 6th, or if he really believes that restaurant patrons cannot possibly be expected to ride a bus to this neighborhood like they do to any other in the city. But we can certainly make his complaints look ridiculous by crunching a few numbers, and are only too happy to do so!

There are 71 parking spots on the sides of 6th between Market and Howard. (We counted. You can too!) Scott believes that in order for 6th to turn into a “gourmet ghetto” like the Castro or Marina (an assertion that forced SFist to ask, “does this guy really live here?”), he needs permission to park his car in a spot for over an hour.

So! Seventy-one cars, hanging out for, oh, let’s say, 2 hours. And let’s guess that there’s 2.5 people riding around in each car. So during the dinner rush, let’s say 6pm to 10pm, that’s around 350 people. The population of San Francisco is 808,976, so, under the awesome new Scott James Rules For Turning 6th Street Into a Parking Lot, that means that .04% of us would be able to drive down to 6th Street and buy a baguette or whatever.

Put another way, if everyone in San Francisco took turns driving down and staying for 2 hours, it would take about 7 years for the entire city to visit 6th Street one time.

Or, of course, Scott could someday deign to get on a bike, bus or train like everybody else.

*Apparently the ginormous parking garage one block away is one block too far.

Photo illustration: Tim Ehhalt

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  • cedichou

    I remembered being frisked at Tu Lan, and when they found a muni transfer in my pocket, they kicked me out. Also, you seem to under-evaluate how many people can eat there by forgetting in your (shoddy) parking analysis that most of the restaurants in this new ghetto gourmet ghetto have a drive-thru lane.

  • cedichou

    I remembered being frisked at Tu Lan, and when they found a muni transfer in my pocket, they kicked me out. Also, you seem to under-evaluate how many people can eat there by forgetting in your (shoddy) parking analysis that most of the restaurants in this new ghetto gourmet ghetto have a drive-thru lane.

  • RichieRitchStreet

    Okay, so the NY Times article basically argues that 6th street deserves the same level playing field as other hoods in the city when it comes to parking. What’s wrong with that? As a longtime SoMa resident, I think its douchey for the city to single out 6th Street for the worst parking rules – while at the same time trying to draw visitors. It’s kind of racist of the city, I think. Picking on the poor as usual.

    This analysis is equally douchey. Let them take Muni? Reviving 6th is only for residents? It is really lame spin. I think the writer is jealous because an out of town newspaper broke a story he missed.

  • RichieRitchStreet

    Okay, so the NY Times article basically argues that 6th street deserves the same level playing field as other hoods in the city when it comes to parking. What’s wrong with that? As a longtime SoMa resident, I think its douchey for the city to single out 6th Street for the worst parking rules – while at the same time trying to draw visitors. It’s kind of racist of the city, I think. Picking on the poor as usual.

    This analysis is equally douchey. Let them take Muni? Reviving 6th is only for residents? It is really lame spin. I think the writer is jealous because an out of town newspaper broke a story he missed.

  • IbeforeE

    @cedichou:
    Frisked at Tu Lan? not likely. In fact, not even possible.

    You assert that “most restaurants in this [area] have a drive-thru lane.” Please name even one. There are no Sixth Street area restaurants with drive thru. None. In fact, there are fewer than a dozen drive-thru’s in SF, just one of them anywhere near this neighborhood.

    Next time you visit SF, stop by the tourism office and get yourself some integrity. It’s free, but you have to promise to use it.

  • IbeforeE

    @cedichou:
    Frisked at Tu Lan? not likely. In fact, not even possible.

    You assert that “most restaurants in this [area] have a drive-thru lane.” Please name even one. There are no Sixth Street area restaurants with drive thru. None. In fact, there are fewer than a dozen drive-thru’s in SF, just one of them anywhere near this neighborhood.

    Next time you visit SF, stop by the tourism office and get yourself some integrity. It’s free, but you have to promise to use it.

  • whir

    @IbeforeE: check this out

  • whir

    @IbeforeE: check this out

  • Desmond Crisis

    I have one rule about going to restaurants that frisk patrons, it goes like this… “WTF!?”

    However, If they can find a way to charge sales tax on illegal drugs and income tax on robberies, pumping up 6th might close the budget deficit…

    To be fair, I don’t spend a whole lot of time there but it sounds like 6th has been calming down over the last year or so.

  • Desmond Crisis

    I have one rule about going to restaurants that frisk patrons, it goes like this… “WTF!?”

    However, If they can find a way to charge sales tax on illegal drugs and income tax on robberies, pumping up 6th might close the budget deficit…

    To be fair, I don’t spend a whole lot of time there but it sounds like 6th has been calming down over the last year or so.

  • Winsome

    How do you do that? That is very cool.

  • Winsome

    How do you do that? That is very cool.

  • kmsinsf

    awesome and hilarious. how do I do that?

  • kmsinsf

    awesome and hilarious. how do I do that?

  • Matt Baume

    @Winsome & @kmsinsf : http://tinyurl.com/632hcv

  • Matt Baume

    @Winsome & @kmsinsf : http://tinyurl.com/632hcv

  • be_devine

    That the NYT guy thinks the Castro is a “foodie destination” shows that either he’s never stepped foot in the Castro, or he’s confusing a “foodie” with a connoisseur of fine porn and dildos.

  • be_devine

    That the NYT guy thinks the Castro is a “foodie destination” shows that either he’s never stepped foot in the Castro, or he’s confusing a “foodie” with a connoisseur of fine porn and dildos.