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France: Motorcycle Parking Becoming A Luxury

24
May
2012
  Posted at 08:00:00 AM
  File under  France Opinion
  Author: Mike Werner
  Location: Normandy, France
click to see where France is on the map

Living in a world dominated by socialists and left-wing green parties, plus an explosive growth of motorcycles and scooters in the big cities, can bring a lot of problems, and some of them are not that evident.

One of the biggest headaches for both bikers and city planners is that when the motorcycle market expands very rapidly, the problem is "where do you park your motorcycle?".

Some 15 years ago, it wasn't a problem. You could ride up to the sidewalk and park your bike there as long as you didn't hinder pedestrians. But then 1) the treehuggers came, 2) the socialsts started running Paris and 3) the number of motorcycles and scooters coming into the big cities exploded. In Paris, parking a motorcycle on the sidewalk, became illegal, though it had always been the case, but until now it was tolerated. No longer. Parking tickets, and even removals of "badly" parked bikes have become the norm.

Cities like Paris, Nice (run by a former MotoGP racer who is the Mayor - source Open link in a new window) and Marseilles started placing special motorcycle parking sports. PTWPowered Two Wheel - motorcyles, scooters, mopeds were now only allowed to park their bikes in these spots. But the parking spots represented about 30% of the number of bikes coming into the cities, i.e., totally inadequate. Paris is to install 18,000 more motorcycle parking areas before 2014, bringing the total up to 50,000, a drop of garlic in a typical French meal.

The city of Nice is trying it by changing the layouts of car parkings, adding special spaces in between the spaces for motorcycles, an innovative way, but is it enough?

Ticketing clamped motorcycle

Now, the Mayor of Paris and his cronies are coming up with the next solution. Make the motorcyclist PAY. They are looking into placing parking ticket machines next to motorcycle parking areas. They haven't figured it out yet, since as we all know you can't place a ticket on a motorcycle without it disappearing onto the next bike, but they'll figure something out. This way, they hope that by charging money, less bikes will come into the city. But the irony is that the socialist city (and current government) is going to exclude people who have less money; the people they are trying to "protect". Wealthy bikers will have no problem paying for parking, poor bikers will have a problem.

Let's hope that parking ticket machines are never introduced, nor paying spots, and that the City Halls start seeing motorcycles as a solution to their traffic problems, not a menace. But for that, most politicians will need to have a brain transplantation.





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