Do Suburban Residents Want to Pay for Wide Streets? A Survey on Consumer Preference and Ability to Afford towards Wide Street and On-Street Parking in American Suburbia

All local governments in the U.S. set the street minimum width and cross-section design for local neighborhood streets. Because local streets typically require no more than two traffic lanes (approx. 20 feet wide), a minimum width of 26 feet or wider automatically produces at least one parking lane on the street, making this requirement a de facto parking policy. Supporters believe wide streets with parking are what residents want, while opponents criticize wide streets as the result of an excessive regulation without market demand. By comparing 216 households’ willingness to pay for street parking lanes with the cost of providing them from 20 cities in 11 metropolitan areas in the U.S., the authors found that on average 83% of households cannot afford (or do not want) street parking lanes. The result supports opponents’ stand. The street minimum width requirement tends to over-supply street (and parking) space in American suburbia. Local governments should reduce this requirement to maximize economic efficiency and social welfare and eliminate market distortion.

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  • Supplemental Notes:
    • This document was sponsored by the U.S. Department of Transportation, University Transportation Centers Program. Project Title: Street Standards as Parking Policy: Identifying Residents’ Willingness to Pay.
  • Corporate Authors:

    New York University, New York

    Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service
    295 Lafayette Street
    New York, NY  United States  10012

    University Transportation Research Center

    City College of New York
    Marshak Hall, Suite 910, 160 Convent Avenue
    New York, NY  United States  10031

    Federal Highway Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, DC  United States  20590

    Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology

    University Transportation Centers Program
    Department of Transportation
    Washington, DC  United States  20590
  • Authors:
    • Kuai, Yiwen
    • Guo, Zhan
  • Publication Date: 2016-8-8


  • English

Media Info

  • Media Type: Digital/other
  • Edition: Final Report
  • Features: Figures; Photos; References; Tables;
  • Pagination: 38p

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01638802
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Contract Numbers: 49997-08-24
  • Created Date: Jun 26 2017 9:30AM