The $110 Parking Ticket to Avoid!

Parking can be challenging sometimes in our Presidio Heights neighborhood because of the neverending construction which takes up parking spaces. We park on the street because we don’t have a garage. Normally, we can park within a block or two of our place but at times during the day, it can be a little more challenging.

This brings me to January 10 after we had just come back from the holidays. On that date, I drove back from an early morning business meeting and circled the block a few times looking for a space. Then I saw a space on Presidio Avenue and parked. I noticed that the curb cut was further beyond the garage so when I parked my car even though it was within the curb cut, I made sure it was not blocking the garage.

It appeared that this curb cut was an older one that had likely been made before the present building was in place. I planned to park my car there only for part of the day since I had another business meeting that afternoon. A little more than 2 hours after I had parked, a traffic officer came to my door. He informed me that I was blocking a driveway. That surprised me since I knew I wasn’t blocking any driveway.

He told me that if you park within a curb cut even if you are not blocking a driveway, it is still considered blocking a driveway. “It is generally illegal to park in front of a driveway or past a “curb cut,” which is the point where the curb starts to slope downward and the driveway begins…[I]f your vehicle extends into the red zone or the curb cut, you may get a ticket and/or towed. Driveway violations are only enforced when someone makes a complaint, and a parking control officer determines that there is a violation.” “San Francisco Parking Tips: Parking Around Driveways” SFMTA October 12, 2016.

After only 2 hours my neighbor up the street reported me even though I was not blocking her garage in any way – look at the photo! My car is the silver one; hers is the blue car actually blocking the driveway. What do you think? I was unfamiliar with this law so now I am making all of you familiar with it so that you don’t get a $110 ticket or worse – towed! I’m thankful I was home because if the officer hadn’t found me, my car would have been towed and that would have been a much bigger headache and several hundred dollars more in fines. Thanks, Neighbor!

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