This project was funded by the National Institute for Transportation and Communities (NITC).
Autonomous vehicles (AVs) will challenge cities in many ways that are critical to address before widescale adoption. In particular, AVs may upset municipal budgets as they upend traditional auto-related funding streams like registration fees and parking revenues. This research begins to quantify the potential financial impacts of AVs by analyzing current associations between transportation network company (TNC) trips—often viewed as a precursor of AVs—and parking revenue. This report uses TNCs as a proxy for future AV travel to examine the connections between trip-making and on-street parking occupancy and revenue. Specifically, we use Uber trip data along with built environment and parking revenue data from the City of Seattle to ask: what is the association between TNC trips and parking occupancy and revenue? This report suggests that—at least at current trip levels— TNC use will not tank either total or per-space parking revenue in cities. Instead, we find that rather than TNCs reshuffling a fixed number of travelers into a different modal mix, more people are traveling to and from popular destinations using a combination of modes, including both personal vehicles and TNCs. In other words, TNCs and personal driving, which at first blush seem to be classic substitutes, may in fact be complementary by enabling more people to travel to/from locations on preferred routes, times, and modes. While cities are not in immediate danger of losing parking revenues due to TNCs, model results also suggest that revenues may decline as TNC trip volumes increase. Cities should practice scenario planning to understand revenue implications as people take more TNC trips—and eventually AVs—in the coming years.
Brown, Anne and Benjamin Y. Clark. What Makes Cents? How Uber Shapes Municipal On-Street Parking Revenue. NITC-2016-UO-15. Portland, OR: Transportation Research and Education Center (TREC), 2020. https://dx.doi.org/10.15760/trec.252