South Boston Parking Freeze

The South Boston parking freeze (SBPF) is one of three parking freezes in the City of Boston administered by the Air Pollution Control Commission.

New or Modified South Boston Parking Freeze (SBPF) Permits

Established in 1993 under rules of the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (310 CMR 7.33) as one of the air quality mitigation measures associated with the Central Artery/Tunnel project, the South Boston parking freeze limits the availability parking spaces in South Boston. The APCC adopted regulations for the South Boston freeze in 1994, and most recently amended them in March 2006; the regulations include a definition of the freeze area. The regulations divide South Boston into three zones: the Piers Zone; the Industrial/Commercial Zone; and the Residential Zone. Some program requirements differ by zone. See the link above for regulations and the South Boston parking freeze FAQs. Following completion of an inventory of existing parking spaces, the APCC began issuing permits under the freeze in 2004.

More Information about the Central Artery/Tunnel project

The South Boston parking freeze allows a maximum of 30,389 off-street parking spaces in South Boston (not including exempt residential spaces). As of March 10, 2015 there are 1,260 spaces in the parking freeze bank, which can be allocated to new parking facilities. The actual number of facilities and spaces fluctuates as old parking lots close and new ones open. The APCC welcomes and encourages informal inquiries from owners and developers. Residential parking spaces are largely-though not completely-excluded from the freeze.

The provision of the South Boston parking freeze that most recently came into effect is the 20-percent set-aside (see section III (3) of the regulations). The initial freeze permits required parking lot operators in the Piers Zone to reserve 10 percent of their parking spaces for drivers after 9:30 a.m. With the opening of the South Boston Transitway (the Silver Line) in December 2004 and the resulting increase in public transit access to the seaport area, the requirement rose to 20 percent. The set-aside provision does not affect the Industrial/Commercial Zone or the Residential Zone.

Existing permit holders receive information regarding the annual renewal of permits directly from the APCC.

More Information

Contact the Air Pollution Control Commission

Frequently Asked Questions

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About the Parking Freeze
Why is there a South Boston Parking Freeze in place?
What is the rationale behind the South Boston Parking Freeze?
When did the South Boston Parking Freeze come into effect?
How does the South Boston Parking Freeze work?
Who must apply for a South Boston Parking Freeze Permit?
Who must I apply to?
Why are these rules so complicated?
I’m still confused about this. Where can I get help?