Wow! – This is Fan Friggin Tastic


Wow! – This is Fan Friggin Tastic

The school board in Jersey City, NJ, has decided to let people park on their school lots during times when the lot is unused. And they are going to make money at it. Read about it on

They are teaming with Parkmobile and will test the program at two schools and if it is successful, will expand it to more locations. What’s not to like.

The school system will charge $3 a night to park (you must be out by 6AM) with most of the money going to the school district. They hope to collect half a million a year.

Consider the upside. Money for schools, cars off the streets at night, more parking for businesses and local residents.

This could be a model for businesses in cities nationwide. Why not allow cars to park in unused space on nights and weekends. I parked in a bank parking lot this week. There were signs everywhere threatening me with 5 to 10 in prison if I parked there. It was 8 pm. The bank was closed. There were dozens of empty spaces. It just seemed inviting. If they were serious, they could have put a chain across the entry. Why shouldn’t they allow people to park there and use a service like Parkmobile or PaybyPhone to collect a few bucks to cover insurance and leaving the lights on.

What about those 10 spaces next to the dry cleaners or the doctor’s office? The would be perfect for folks going to restaurants or clubs after the lot’s owner closed. The lots could also be used for on street valet companies rather than residential neighborhoods nearby.

Idea! Pay by Cell companies could promote their service to small private lots and generate an income stream for that unused space. Maybe they do this already. I got the idea that Parkmobile was already being used in Jersey City and expanded their program to the local schools.

Another way to make parking attractive and easy for the parker.


Picture of John Van Horn

John Van Horn

4 Responses

  1. The concept and utilization of shared parking has been around a long time, it is a very effective tool.

  2. This kind of service is increasingly common around the world, although it’s a niche. Mostly it is about letting residents or businesses rent out spare (or temporarily empty) driveway, lot or garage space. Happens mostly in busy areas where the main alternative is expensive garage parking or hassle-filled on-street. This school example is an unusual case of a public entity doing it.

    Example companies include JustPark, ParkEx, SPOT, ParkHound, CurbFlip, ShareMyPark, Rakupa, ParkPNP, ParkShare and many more.

    In Beijing, some of the local governments match-make between residential compounds short of parking and office buildings with spare parking at night (and vice-versa) so they can make deals to ‘share’.

  3. Super — Let’s tell the world all about it. Thanks Paul —
    We understand that and Airbnb style rental of a parking space in one’s driveway or garage is widespread, but you have to use one of the apps listed. Having a local school or business allow folks to park there in off hours seems more pervasive.

  4. JVH – there’s a fast-growing company here in Indianapolis called Flexepark ( doing exactly what you describe. They help the local dentist and accountant make a couple extra bucks on open spaces during nights and weekends. Ironically, despite being from the same town, I met their CEO, Michael Dowden at PIE 2019.

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