Free Parking

April 12, 2011 at 12:40pm By: Mr. Wilson Posted in The Lincolnite Blog

I’m having a really difficult time getting myself fired up over commercial vehicles legally parking in places that are advantageous for their advertising properties. You’ve seen them around: those trucks, vans, or other vehicles with prominent advertising on the side that are parked far from their apparent homes. But some folks are up in arms, and their natural reaction is “there oughtta be a law”.

There appear to be three primary factors at play here. The first is unsightliness. Some folks don’t care for the mobile billboards’ aesthetic qualities. I’m not convinced that’s a reason to write up a new law. If you want to control your neighborhood’s visual vibe, go join a homeowner’s association. That’s not to say that the “look” of an area should never be subject to legal constraints, but a truck with a logo and a phone number surely falls short of any reasonable person’s concern.

The second factor is convenience. In at least one instance, a business’s ability to receive deliveries is allegedly hampered by a legally-parked truck. It won’t take a creative person long to come up with oodles of solutions that don’t require a blanket, city-wide ban. A specific, targeted no parking zone (perhaps limited to common delivery hours) is certainly a better way to go, for example.

The final factor appears to be simple petty rivalry. Some business owners don’t like how other business owners do things. It’s a tale as old as history, and frankly, it’s annoying. Rather than come to terms with an action that doesn’t actually hurt anyone (other than the easily-remedied situation noted above), a group of offended individuals runs to a lawmaker for assistance. It’s an uncreative and over-broad “solution” to a (mostly) non-problem.

But you know me. I’m not the sort to look to an ordinance to solve life’s little annoyances until the justification is particularly strong. In this case, it isn’t. Perhaps one of you can convince me otherwise. Have a go at it.

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The Comments

Fletch April 12, 2011 at 2:02pm

I was afraid this would be a complaint about my new moving van that is advertising my forthcoming Lincoln blog site, which I planned to prominently park in front of your place, just to capture your traffic.

Mr. Wilson April 12, 2011 at 3:38pm

Everybody else parks in front of my house. You may as well join the party.

CS April 12, 2011 at 4:24pm

All I have to add is “big flippin deal.” He’s figured out a way to get some free advertising and they don’t like it. Wahhhhh.

Errandbug Restaurant Delivery April 12, 2011 at 11:25pm

What is even better…so what about off duty Sheriff cars parked in residential streets?  People who drive their work vehicles home?  A blanket city law would create all sorts of unintended consequences…ie, remember that law where people could drop their kids off at the hospital and just walk away?  It was a blanket law to cover a few things that should have been address one on one…instead they passed a blanket…and only a month later knew it was not the right solution.  Blanket bans rarely solve problems.

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