On Saturday morning NPR had an interview with UCLA urban planning professor Donald Shoup. His new book, The High Cost of Free Parking, sounds like it’s a worthy read. He makes arguments along the lines that nothing is free (where have we heard that before?), and that the cost of providing for free parking gets reflected in the goods and services we buy, as well as in land values.
The interviewer asked him about the effects on public transportation, and he said quite simply that municipalities providing free parking subsidizes driving and reduces demand for public transportation. It was incredibly refreshing to hear an urban planning professor make these arguments. And on NPR, even.