Is Free Parking Costing Us Billions?

from the it-takes-733-pages-to-discuss? dept

Always interesting economist Tyler Cowen has a story in the NY Times discussing the "cost" of free parking. It's based on the book The High Cost of Free Parking, which spent an astounding 733 pages to delve into the subject. The book suggests that "free parking" cost people in the US at least $127 billion in 2002. I haven't read the book -- and at that page length I'm sure there's a detailed discussion on nearly every challenge -- but I do wonder if it takes into account the benefits to local businesses of free parking. The easier it is to park, the more likely people are to go to those businesses. I'm guessing that the response is that if this does make sense, it should be a per-business decision, rather than a government-mandated one, which is the main complaint. This isn't a subject I've thought much about, frankly, but I found Cowen's discussion of it interesting, and thought people around here might have some... enlightening comments on the subject.

Filed Under: economics, free parking

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  1. icon
    Free Capitalist (profile), 17 Aug 2010 @ 10:26am

    Re: Re: Milk Money

    should be noted that cars are a problem even without taking global warming into production.

    True, however this is not the fault of the people driving cars. Independent inventors have been coming up with fuel efficient and alternate fuel vehicles since the middle of the 20th century. These forward looking designs were systematically suppressed thanks to the patent system and the sponsorship of Big Money interests by the U.S. government.

    Mercantilism is not for the masses nor for the environment.

    Should we trust reform to the same people who allowed us to get in this position of having a huge (nearly legislated) demand for a limited natural resource?

    Sea change was ready decades ago, only the entrenched money players, with the help of legislative powers, prevented the evolution of the market. - This is exactly what multi-national industrial "controls" will do. Change for the better will be stymied at our expense as well as the world's.

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