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Blocked Driveway Cub Cutouts Parking San Francisco City


Reporting an Illegal Parking Problem

Red Curbcut

Parking and Driveway Cutouts (Blocking a Driveway)

Driveway Owners

A Friend Blocking Your Driveway

Size of a Cutout/Driveway

Reporting an Illegal Parking Problem

Blocked Driveway: 1-415-553-1200 1st Menu press 1 (English) 2 (Spanish) etc, 2nd Menu press 5

72 Hour Parking Abandoned Vehicles: 1-415-553-1200 1st Menu press 1 (English) 2 (Spanish) etc, 2nd Menu press 4

Blocked Sidewalk: 1-415-553-1200 1st Menu press 1 (English) 2 (Spanish) etc, 2nd Menu press 6

Other Illegal Parking Problems: 1-415-553-1200 1st Menu press 1 (English) 2 (Spanish) etc, 2nd Menu press 7

311 website for Blocked Driveway & Illegal Parking Request:

331 website for 72 hour or Abandoned Vehicles Request:

311 main website:

There is also a 311 app availalbe for Android or Apple.

Red Curb Driveway Cutout

red painted curbcut to a driveway

The painted red curbs in this photo mean nothing as they are illegally painted. An illegal painted curb can be reported to 311: Any part of your vehicle going beyond the down part of the cutouts, where the blue lines are, could give you a ticket. This cutout is over the standard 10 feet, but the garage is larger than standard, so the driveway cutout probably has a permit. (see below)

Legally painted red curb driveway cutout San Francisco
Legally Painted Red Curb. Note the MTA Stamp.

To get a Legal Painted Red Curb Driveway Cutout:


Parking and Driveway Cutouts (Blocking a Driveway)

Your vehicle cannot extend into the downward curve part a driveway or park within a official red curb paint. If that is indistinguishable, then your vehicle cannot extend into the opening that would be reasonably used by a vehicle to access their property. The opening of the garage door is not the determinate of whether you are blocking a driveway or not. It is the driveway cutout. See below for max size of driveway cutout.

Blocking of residential driveways are complaint-driven.

CA Vehicle Code
CHAPTER 9. Stopping, Standing, and Parking [22500 - 22526]

22500. A person shall not stop, park, or leave standing any vehicle whether attended or unattended, except when necessary to avoid conflict with other traffic or in compliance with the directions of a peace officer or official traffic control device, in any of the following places:

(e) (1) In front of a public or private driveway, except that a bus engaged as a common carrier, schoolbus, or a taxicab may stop to load or unload passengers when authorized by local authorities pursuant to an ordinance.

(2) In unincorporated territory, where the entrance of a private road or driveway is not delineated by an opening in a curb or by other curb construction, so much of the surface of the ground as is paved, surfaced, or otherwise plainly marked by vehicle use as a private road or driveway entrance, shall constitute a driveway.§ionNum=22500

San Francisco Municipal Code: Article 7: Violations SEC. 7.2.24. PARKING IN DRIVEWAYS.

To Park a vehicle in a manner that blocks a private driveway, except as authorized in Division II, Section 1004.
(Amended by Ord. 287-08, File No. 081340, App. 12/5/2008)

San Francisco Municipal Traffic Code: Article 7: Violations SEC. 7.2.24. PARKING IN DRIVEWAYS does not say the vehicle itself. It is parking "in a manner" and if that manner of parking the vehicle including anything attached to that vehicle that blocks a private driveway than it is a violation. This would cover bike rack, ladders, hitches, etc. that extented beyond the vehicle and into the curb cut.

The exception cited in the code allows the owner of a housing unit to block their own driveway.

Driveway Owners

Technically you can get a parking ticket for blocking your own driveway under CA vehicle code. But San Francisco Municipal Traffic Code Section 1004 states: “The owner or lessee of property shall be permitted to park the owner’s or lessee’s vehicle across the private driveway of said property, provided that such vehicle displays a valid license plate registered to the address of that property with the Department of Motor Vehicles, and provided that such driveway serves no more than two family dwelling units. This Section does not permit the parking of vehicles across sidewalks or in red zones.”

Getting a ticket for blocking your own driveway doesn’t happen that I know of but I have heard of neighbors calling in a blocked driveway on another neighbor’s driveway knowing full well that the car belongs to the occupants of the house. Department of Parking & Traffic (DPT) officers always ask for the residents of the home, so getting cited this way does not happen unless you are blocking the sidewalk .

Sometimes a DPT officer will ask you to open your garage, this may be to prove you live there. They may be checking if you have space in your garage for a vehicle. There is no vehicle code that says you have to have space for a car in your garage. The vehicle code is about access to your driveway. So even if your garage is full, you should be able to still backup a car and remove or place items into your garage.


A Friend Blocking Your Driveway

Blocking of residential driveways are complaint-driven, but sometimes other people call other than the home owner or renter.

While legally only a resident can block their own driveway San Francisco Municipal Traffic Code Section 1004, the city procedure states:

Vehicle Blocking My Driveway - Cite and Tow:
CONTACT NAME AND PHONE NUMBER ARE REQUIRED. You are required to meet the officer when they arrive. If you decline to meet the officer, they will cite only and not tow.

questionable blocked driveway

This vehicle is over the cutout for the driveway, but there is plenty of room between the garage door and the edge of the vehicle. The cutout appears to be larger than the standard 10 feet which would require a special permit. Considering the cutout extends probably to the edge of the building and there appears to be no special circumstances that warrant such a larger cutout, the cutout is probably illegal and done without a permit. There is a good chance the owner of the building did this to save themselves a parking place.


Size of a Cutout/Driveway

The maximum standard driveway cutout is 10 feet without a “special circumstance” permit.

Planning Department, page 4:
The total width of the garage door should be no larger than necessary to accommodate the off-street parking space. The total width of the curb cut should not exceed the Planning Department’s standard curb cut maximum of 10 feet.
In any instance where a proposed curb cut or garage door exceeds either of these dimensional requirements, the application will be routed upstairs for further review, where the burden will be upon the applicant to show that there are special circumstances that warrant larger dimensions…

So two questions: If you get a parking ticket for blocking a driveway, is the driveway cutout larger than 10 ft. and did they get a special circumstance permit to have such a wide driveway? Chances are if the driveway is over 10 ft., it was not permitted. If you can prove that, you can win your ticket. You will probably have to register a permit violation with SF planning department for proof. Past permits can be searched online by address. If they are in violation of a permit or no permit, this will end up costing them a lot, penalties and correcting the problem.

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