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