Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of City and Regional Planning


Michael Boswell


The crisis of climate change has jumpstarted a renewed interest in environmental sustainability. The growing awareness of the problem and the ensuing intense search for solutions called for a scrutinizing reexamination of the relationships between transportation, land use, and greenhouse gas emissions. Major publications such as The High Cost of Free Parking by Donald Shoup in 2005, and Parking Management, Strategies, Evaluation and Planning by Todd Litman in 2008, have identified parking as a crucial link. Parking issues are intrinsic to planning because parking facilities are a major land use type that affects how we design and build our commercial and residential areas, as well as influences our travel behavior which directly affects the form of urban infrastructure demanded by society.

The management of parking demand and supply is highly complex because of its political and controversial nature. This thesis studies parking comprehensively in order to provide a guide for Silicon Valley cities. The contents of this comprehensive toolbox include background information, overview of major strategies with local examples, suggestions for securing financial and human resources necessary for planning and implementation of parking policies, and an inventory and analysis of current policies of 22 Silicon Valley cities. Also included in the appendix is a presentation with illustrations summarizing the thesis, titled "The Story of Parking”.

This study recommends strengthening the language of existing, adopted parking policies and following up with appropriate implementation measures to decrease general parking demand in Silicon Valley cities. Cities can further manage their parking supply and demand by adopting new policies such as parking maximums, allowance of off-site parking with shuttle services, allowance of parking lifts, and improving accessibility of parking user information.. More aggressive policies to adopt and implement include parking taxes, parking pricing, encouraging car share, and unbundling parking.