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Britain's obsession with big cars sees car park scrapes up by a third

Sunday, February 12, 2017 8:10
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From The Telegraph:

Family cars are becoming too big for parking spaces, figures from car makers show, as vehicles’ expanding size is causing a rapid increase in car park scrapes and accidents…

The number of car park crashes soared by 35 per cent over the past two years, leading experts to warn that standard parking spaces are no longer big enough to accommodate this new, chunkier breed of automobile…

The average parking space is just 4.8 metres long and 2.4 metres wide, making it more than just a tight squeeze for many popular cars. Range Rover and Audi Q7 models, for example, measure five metres long and are more than two metres wide.

This has been at the back of my mind for a couple of months and is brought starkly home every time some idiot on a small tank nearly rams me (the tops of my cars are below the window line of many of these tanks!). Like so many perceived problems, it’s a job for LVT-man:

1. Set car tax so that it is based on vehicle width rather than fuel consumption, which is already adequately dealt with via fuel duty. Wide vehicles are a nuisance to other road users and can pay ‘rent’ for road space accordingly, similarly they can reduce the car tax on narrower cars to nil, they are a bother to nobody.

2. Segregate car parks into spaces for “normal cars” and “Chelsea tractors”. This is no different to having bike racks or dedicated motorbike spaces, which are usually in the most convenient parts of a car park.

3. If it’s a ‘free’ car park, like at most supermarkets, replace the 2.4m wide bays with some 3m wide bays in the least-used areas i.e. furthest from the shop entrance or the parking ticket machines, or use the top storeys for Chelsea tractors etc.

4. If it’s a paying car park, charge extra for the larger spaces. They want a quarter more space? Fine, then let them pay a quarter more than normal car drivers.



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