The News Today
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1.16.21
This Should Do The Trick

San Francisco Plans “Safe” Parking for People Living in Vehicles

__Dan Robitzski__Filed Under: Future Society
Image via Pixabay/Victor Tangermann

A Pound Of Cure

San Francisco has among the highest rental costs of any U.S. city. Without access to affordable housing, many people end up living inside their vehicles or on the street. But don’t worry — the city is cooking up a dystopian solution.

Picture this: a parking lot.

What, you want more? CBC reports that in San Francisco, a city notoriously hostile to homeless people, living in a vehicle can land people with $1,000 fines or six-month jail sentences. Now, the city is considering building a lot where people could legally park overnight or long-term without risking a ticket.

Square One

The proposal would convert an existing parking lot into a space that could fit 30 vehicles and provide access to bathrooms, showers, and social services, per CBC. It’s unclear exactly how such a small plan would help people, especially since the lot’s selling point is that it prevents homeless people from getting hit by punitive fines — without doing much to improve their situation.

“There are hundreds of people who are living out in their vehicles in San Francisco, 30 spots is just a drop in the bucket,” Samantha Lew, policy director at the Coalition on Homelessness in San Francisco told CBC. “We measure success by seeing people get into housing,” Lew added.

READ MORE: San Francisco looks to build ‘safe’ parking lot for van-dwellers as B.C. cities face similar crisis [CBC]

More on homelessness: San Francisco Built a System to Track Homeless People