By Adam Verwymeren, Networx
It’s the bane of big-city life, the never-ending search for a parking spot is one of the most frustrating things about living in a densely populated area. And after all that time spent circling the block, you still have to shell out a pretty penny at the meter or in the garage once you actually find a space.
Unless you’re willing to give up city life and move to the country (or give up your car in favor of public transportation), you can’t avoid the expensive realities of parking a car. However, by arming yourself with a bit of knowledge, you can make parking an easier, cheaper act in the future.
The Worst Cities
Not all cities are equal when it comes to parking. Some big cities, like Phoenix, embrace the automotive life, while in others, like New York, a monthly parking spot can force you to take out a second mortgage.
The good news, according to Colliers International’s recent survey of parking lots, is that monthly parking rates actually dropped by 0.2 percent in 2011, with the median rate coming in at $155.22 per month. The bad news, however, is that it is still incredibly expensive to park in many major cities in the U.S. Here are the top five worst cities to park in.
New York — Midtown ($541) & New York — Downtown ($533)
Unsurprisingly, the Big Apple takes the top two spots on the Colliers survey. Most things are more expensive in the country’s largest city and parking is no exception. At more than $500 a month, a parking spot in Manhattan costs more than an iPad. And over the average lifespan of a car, a New Yorker will spend roughly $71,000 — a hefty sum indeed.
While the Big Dig might now be over, the automotive headaches continue for Bostonians as their town ranks second on the list of most expensive cities to park in. Naturally, Boston is second only to New York. Even when it comes to parking, these two towns are forever locked in rivalry.
San Francisco ($375)
San Francisco may have the Golden Gate Bridge, the Bay, and a plethora of stunning views from atop its many peaks, but its steep streets are matched by the steep prices people pay to keep a car.
Next: Philadelphia, Seattle, & how to park smarter