July was a busy month for me, so it’s only now that I finally get a chance to compile my Moving Day pictures and post them.
In the summer, I think it’s just laziness.
Really? You’re going to park across the entire Bixi station? Do you not know what it’s for? Has it not been talked about enough in the news that you don’t recognize it?
I know it used to be a parking space, but you don’t think the giant contraption (not to mention the red “no parking” bag over the meter post) might have been an indication not to park there?
No wonder we need garish concrete barriers installed next to these stations.
Then we have this guy (or girl), who decided to obey that don’t-park-in-front-of-the-fire-hydrant rule but disregard that don’t-park-too-close-to-intersections rule.
What gets me is I’m pretty sure I saw the same car parked the same way in the same space a few weeks earlier. Someone needs to give the driver a ticket or this behaviour is going to continue (or worse, spread).
As the snow fell this weekend on Montreal, the post-snowfall ritual sprang into action. It usually starts with lots of people complaining about the fact that the snow hasn’t been plowed yet. The complaints come so fast I have a feeling they’re written before the snow starts falling in the first place. With the complaints come increasingly ludicrous suggestions on how to fix the problem, such as:
- Blowing snow onto lawns, which apparently exist everywhere downtown.
- Lifting the ban on Tempo tent car shelters, which displace snow from driveways.
- Adjusting clearing schedules so that politicians’ streets are cleared last, which I’m sure will be the most logistically easy thing ever to accomplish.
- Getting out of the business entirely and give us our tax money back.
Almost all the letters are ignorant of just how much organization goes into plowing streets in Montreal, and assume that, without having spent a single second inside a snow plow, they know better how to efficiently clear streets.
Really, the complaints are more misplaced frustration at having to spend two hours digging out their car with a shovel when they were already late for work. Sadly, no magical solution has been found for that yet.
The city then gives a guesstimate about how long it will take to clear, overemphasizing the fact that more snow or rain will delay the operation.
Then, as the plows finally come by to clear the streets, car-owners who ignored no-parking signs panic to relocate them before getting a ticket.
The big difference this time is that the city decided to open up its paid parking lots for free overnight parking (when they’re not used anyway). Drivers can park their cars in them during snow-clearing operations, provided they get them out of there by 6am 7am (thanks Andy) the next day.
Except, because the move was poorly publicized (or because no one wants to get up that early), the lots sat unused this time.
So instead, drivers desperate for a place to park had to each solve the standard snowbank parking dilemma. When faced with a free spot knee-deep in snow, there are three options:
- Find some temporary place to stash the car and dig the spot out with a shovel, hoping nobody swoops in and steals the spot after you’ve cleared it (this also presents the recursive problem of where to put the car when you’re clearing the spot)
- Declare the spot unparkable, and keep going looking for another one, which most likely doesn’t exist
- Drive the car as far as it will go into the spot, and then give up, leaving it either parked diagonally, parked far from the curb, or both
The pictures below show some Montreal drivers who chose Option 3 on Saturday night and Sunday afternoon.