Construction industry happy with SFMTA’s proposal for reserving meters 

Reserving street meter spaces for construction projects will cost a little for more building firms, but compared with an earlier proposal, the industry is coming away smiling about the new deal.

Currently, construction companies pay $4 a day for each metered space that they inhabit for their projects. Last September, the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, which manages traffic in The City, proposed increasing those rates by over 450 percent — to $22.50 a day — while extending the fees to include street fairs, film and commercial shoots, and athletic events.

After hearing an earful from an array of entertainment groups, including the Film Commission, the SFMTA shelved its proposal to expand the program. Also, after intense negotiations with the construction industry, the SFMTA adjusted their proposed increase to a more modest $5 per meter per day.

The SFMTA came up with that total as a cost recovery mechanism — on average meters bring in about $4.72 to $4.86 a day in revenue.

On Tuesday, the SFMTA’s Policy and Governance Committee recommended the reworked proposal for final approval at a future full Board of Directors meeting.

Sean Keighran, president of the Residential Builders Association of San Francisco, said the final proposal was much more fair to the industry, which has seen a 94 percent decline in new building permits since 2007 and suffers from a 30 percent unemployment rate.

“The increase to $22.50 per meter would have been devastating,” Keighran said.

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Will Reisman

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