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I have a hard time getting too excited about double-parking in bike lanes.

Double-parking is an accepted practice all over the city. Businesses need deliveries to be made, and there is just no other way to do it. The question is, if people are going to double-park anyway, where is the best place for them to do it? Even from the cyclist's perspective the bike lane is the best place. I would much rather pass a double-parked vehicle on the left than thread the needle between a car parked at the curb and a truck parked to the left of a bike lane. Especially when you consider that the truck is making a delivery, and the truck driver is likely to pop out any moment with a handcart full of Snapple or something.

As for the police car, where is the cop supposed to park when he's responding to a call? On the sidewalk? Should he find a space in a lot?

The reality is that even when you're in a bike lane, you're still in traffic. The notion that somehow a stripe of paint is going to isolate you from the practicalities of traveling in an urban environment is naive.

I'd say a well-designed city would not require trucks to double park. That's what loading zones and loading docks are for. DC has allowed too many builders to build block-sized building that swallow up alleys with loading docks and force traffic into the alley.

If a cop is responding to an emergency, then yes. Parking in the bike lane or the fire lane, or handicapped space etc... is acceptable. But I can not even count the number of times that I have seen cops illegally park to walk into Chipotle for lunch or something. Also, it's impossible to tell if this police car is parked or moving, or if the lights on top are on.

And no. Double parking is not an acceptable practice.

I don't care if people obey the law or not, as long as they're safe and courteous. And double parking is rude and dangerous.

I didn't say it was an acceptable practice, but an accepted one. But it's not just cyclists who have a problem with it, double-parking (and the lack of enforcement) is a staple of the Dr. Gridlock column.

John Allen has an entertaining take on the issue here: http://www.bikexprt.com/bikepol/facil/doublepark.htm

And sure, the city shouldn't be laid out the way it is. The problem is, we have to go to war with the army we have. I mean, we have to live with the world the way we found it.

I feel this problem can be fixed. I'm just that naive. It involves high parking meter fees to institute high turnover, etc...Shoup stuff.

This reminds me of a story. Someone was telling me of finding an unattended UPS truck in the bike lane. Annoyed and with some time to spare he decided to wait for the driver to return when he would give him a piece of his mind. After some time it occurred to him that the driver may not want to listen to this and would drive off before he was done. Then he noticed the car keys still dangling in the ignition. So he grabbed them so the UPS guy could not leave. Time moved forward and after 25 minutes or so, no UPS guy and the guy telling the story had to go. While waiting he'd read the keys which had one of those "If found, drop in any mailbox" things on it. So he rode to the nearest mailbox and did just that.

It's funny, but I don't recommend it. It leaves the truck in the spot where it shouldn't be and the driver never even knows why he was punished. That's why you need to leave a note.

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