30 July 2009

KingCast says "Scoot on Up!" -- Respect and reform promised on Boston scooter and motorcycle parking laws.

Crucial update: Boston Globe Story "Scooter owners rev up protest on parking" (They should kill the "rev" thing, it's the second time they've used it LOL).

Crucial update #2: How to park a scoot in Boston.

I've been pinging Boston parking and a couple of councilors for months now about the ridiculous "no angle parking" money-making scheme wherein the use of motorcycles and scooters is actively discouraged. See the waste of space that promotes in the bottom picture. Here's how it works:

Streets slope downward toward the curb to facilitate runoff, duh. So you park your brand-new, stylin'-assed Sumbeachy Gnarly 1000 Turbo with the Kung Fu grip(TM)(patent pending) at an angle with the rear tyre against the curb for stability. I dunno call the angle about 45 degrees. You typically use your sidestand as opposed to your center stand when running about town..... But see, if you have a tallish sidestand your bike is very susceptable to falling over on its right side. Thing is, the shiny stuff is supposed to stay on the UPside. For what it's worth, many bikes, including my new Ninja 650R don't even HAVE a centerstand......

At any rate, how does Boston reward you for using a fuel-efficient motorcycle or scooter?

They give you a ticket for "No Angle Parking," that's how. I've got a few of them saved up from Davey Kenney's BMW R100S, a bike with a tall sidestand.

But at or around 7:15 a.m. today, Boston Commissioner of Transportation Thomas Tinlin promised me (watch the video) an end to all of that at today's Scooter rally at the Statehouse. I hope he's right because Boston needs to move into the 21st Century regarding bicycles, scooters and motorcycles. These are all efficient forms of transporation that are much nicer to the Earth than our 4-wheeled devices. Hell I haven't driven my BMW in a week except once to work when it rained. Why should I? Biking is more fun, keeps you out in nature and saves money and natural resources.

I'm sure my friend and Boston Mayoral Candidate Kevin McCrea would agree; in addition to being a man of integrity who has successfully sued the City for open government (McCrea v. Flaherty 2007-P-0224) he is also a professional motorcycle racer who has actually competed at Isle of Man, something I would not dare to do I'll say that much.

We have got to get multiple discounted parking for bikes and dedicated areas just as other towns and cities offer. Even New Hampshire is ahead of Boston on this, go to the beach and see what I mean. New Hampshire, ahead of Boston. Whoa.

As to bicycles, much work to be done there as well. Listen to my friend Emmi Sorokin of "It's a Man's World" image consulting discuss bike riding in Boston on NPR.


Note: The Scooter dilemma is much more confusing than my particular issue as it includes not only angle parking, but registration and licensing and mandatory street-only parking, much of which is counterproductive and may lead to a rise in scooter damages and theft. Their situation comes from the State House, as opposed to the angle parking issue, which affects both scooters and motorcycles and which comes from the City itself. Here is last week's Boston Globe story "Scooter law revving up worry" on that.

See also:

Jeez you almost gotta' be a lawyer to keep up with this stuff. I knew that education would come in handy one day :)

PS: I rode my bike 120+ miles today on work-related errands. I took the picture of the Twinja today on Route 97 between Wenham and Boxford. Anyway, one of these errands was to drop off some documents with a North Shore church. Come to find out that the Pastor of said church... races.... and owns five (5).... motorcycles.

Hell yeah, I say.

1 comment:

Christopher King said...

Michael Jackson parked his bike at poolside.

That was the same minibike I rode for the first time, the venerable Honda QA-50.

I've been hooked on two wheels ever since 1973.

-The KingCaster