Aug 12, 2022 - News

Hayes Valley gets its own parking zone (and name)

Hayes Valley parking sign

Sign being installed on the edge of the new Area HV parking zone. Photo: Nick Bastone/Axios

Hayes Valley is getting San Francisco's first ever residential permit parking area with a name that reflects its neighborhood: "Area HV."

Context: Previously, the SFMTA assigned permit parking area names alphabetically.

  • The program, which the city created in 1976 to maintain parking spaces for residents in neighborhoods heavily frequented by commuters and tourists, established its first permitted zone — Area A — in North Beach. Then came Area B, C, and so on, until it circled around the alphabet and reached Area EE in the Dogpatch.
  • The new Hayes Valley parking zone would have likely been Area FF, SFMTA spokesperson Erica Kato said, had neighbors not pushed for HV.

Why it matters: Beyond the name, the new zone is expected to alleviate some street parking competition for Hayes Valley residents.

  • Previously, Hayes Valley was a part of two nearby permitted parking zones — Area S and Area R — which allowed people who lived in the Mission and elsewhere to park in the neighborhood long term.
  • Not all streets in Hayes Valley were assigned a permit area, meaning anyone with a car could park on those streets throughout the week.

Furthermore, those who lived on a street previously unassigned to a permit zone weren't able to park on some streets — just a block or two away — for longer than two hours at a time.

What they're saying: "We are hopeful that the new … permit area will make it easier for local residents to find parking close to home," Hayes Valley Neighborhood Association president Jennifer Laska told us.

What's next: Hayes Valley residents won't be able to show off their new parking zone name on their car bumpers, since the SFMTA did away with physical permit stickers earlier this year in favor of "license plate recognition" technology.

  • Still, the city is installing updated street signs donning the Area HV name — a project that should be completed by October.

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