No, you can’t have a magic citywide parking permit


Car2go car share is coming to D.C.

TBD sole survivor John Hendel does the yeoman’s work of figuring out exactly passing on exactly how much the new Car2Go service is paying the city to allow its users to park its 200 Smart cars on D.C. streets with impunity.

Turns out $578,000 is buying the company the right to avoid parking tickets for a year — $2,890 a car. A Car2Go flack tells Hendel the price covers “metered parking and the zone 9 residential parking permit.”

Whoa, whoa, whoa — Zone 9?

Prior to reading those words, my residential parking permit math went like this: There are eight wards; there are eight permit zones. They basically correspond to each other with some degree of zone weirdness near the ward borders.

 But a ninth zone? Free parking in Prince George’s County, then?

Nope, a Zone 9 permit — as seen in this Wikicommons photo — entitles the vehicle it is placed on to park in zones 1 though 8 without fear of ticket, said John Lisle, transportation department spokesman.

”They are only for the point-to-point program,” Lisle said, referring to Car2Go’s novel no-reserved-space model. “And no, they are not for sale to individuals.”

Even for $2,890.

UPDATE, 5/11: While Hendel indeed does yeoman’s work on a regular basis, he acknoledged in his TBD piece that it was ex-Post tech writer Rob Pegoraro, writing at Discovery, who first reported the price of Car2go’s parking privileges. Rob — mea culpa maxima!

Mike DeBonis covers Congress and national politics for The Washington Post. He previously covered D.C. politics and government from 2007 to 2015.

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