While reading the comments about the Albany parking permit system, many of them very critical, we got to wondering about whether a parking spot is some sort of right -- or something more along the lines of a privilege or bonus.
So, of course, we floated the question on Twitter. There were some interesting responses -- both practical and philosophical...
Related: There's a school of thought that parking in this country is too cheap. Economist Tyler Cowen explained the thinking in NYT a few years back:
Is this a serious economic issue? In fact, it's a classic tale of how subsidies, use restrictions, and price controls can steer an economy in wrong directions. Car owners may not want to hear this, but we have way too much free parking.
Higher charges for parking spaces would limit our trips by car. That would cut emissions, alleviate congestion and, as a side effect, improve land use.
Cowen goes on to talk about the work of Donald Shoup, a UCLA urban planning professor and the author of The High Cost of Free Parking. He continues the discussion on his excellent blog -- and responds to criticism.
We'd really like you to take part in the conversation here at All Over Albany. But we do have a few rules here. Don't worry, they're easy. The first: be kind. The second: treat everyone else with the same respect you'd like to see in return. Cool? Great, post away. Comments are moderated so it might take a little while for your comment to show up. Thanks for being patient.