In most cities, parking is the Achilles heel of motorization.

Even in walkable cities with available transit, free or inexpensive parking can undermine gains in other areas by triggering unnecessary driving activity and stoking congestion. To decrease private car usage cities need to focus on various policies like increasing public transportation, creating no-car zones to encourage walking and cycling, and decreasing the space allocated for inefficient vehicles like private cars. The right parking management reforms and pricing can effectively and efficiently curb driving behavior and encourage a shift to more sustainable modes of transport. Congestion pricing, which involves charging a fee to drivers entering the city center during peak hours, has also been used effectively to manage driving demand in many global cities. These measures produce dramatic results. These include sharp cuts to congestion, a boost to the reliability and speed of public transportation, reductions in air pollution and energy use, and a source of revenue for cities and public transit agencies.

The development and enactment of progressive parking policies and pricing schemes has emerged as an important component in the fight against rising transport emissions and unsustainable urban development. One major aspect of the TOD Standard, developed by ITDP, is parking reform. Through adequate parking fees and reduction in the overall supply of parking creates incentives for the use of public transport, walking, and cycling. ITDP has been working in cities around the world to improve the understanding of city officials about the importance of parking management and setting the right allocations of parking spaces in new buildings to prevent unnecessary driving.

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