Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Back-in angle parking for Montpelier?

The idea is simple: you take diagonal parking and change the direction of the parking spots from angling 45 degrees from traffic to 135 degrees from the flow of traffic. This could be very interesting for a number of roads in Montpelier as the city is planning on becoming a certified "League of American Bicyclists Bronze Medal Bike Friendly City".  Read more about Back-in angle parking below.

Back-in/head-out angle parking is similar to both parallel and standard angle parking. As
with parallel parking, the driver enters the stall by stopping and backing, but need not
maneuver the front of the vehicle against the curb. When leaving the stall, the driver can
simply pull out of the stall, and has a better view of the oncoming traffic.
This type of parking provides a safer environment for bicyclists using the roadways. The
driver is able to see the cyclist easily when exiting the stall. Several cities where back-in
angle parking has been implemented have seen a reduction in number of accidents
compared to the number of accidents at regular parallel parking schemes. Matt Zoll at
Tucson-Pima County Bicycle Advisory Committee says that after implementing the backin/head-out angle parking scheme in Tucson they “went from an average of 3-4 bike/car
accidents per month to no reported accidents for 4 years following implementation.”
In contrast to standard angle parking the visibility while exiting a back-in/head-out angle
parking into traffic is much improved. When the driver is backing up (into the stall), the
driver is in control of his lane: traffic behind either waits, or changes lanes.
Steep terrain 
Back-in angle parking can also be useful on steep terrain: if used on the correct side of the
street, it causes drivers to automatically curb their wheels, which in turn prevents runaway
autos. Used on the wrong side of a steep street, however, it is likely to cause more
Disabled parking 
In Pottstown, PE, a 13-foot wide handicap accessible stall has been incorporated into the
angle parking as the last space, intersection nearside, of each block. This places each
disabled parking stall close to the existing curb ramps, and allows the wheelchair-using
drivers to unload out of the way of traffic (see Figure 6). By contrast, the street’s previous
parallel parking arrangement could not be safely used for disabled parking, and
conventional angle parking raised safety concerns for the street’s proposed bicycle lanes.
Read the whole article HERE at albanyhomezone.


  1. Interesting, this is how we would park our vehicles in the military and it worked out really well. I will be curious to see how this works for Montpelier and if people will really follow it. The general public is so used to nosing in...I have my doubts.

  2. That's brilliant for all the reasons stated, but I'll add a reason. In roughly 30 years of biking I have had one accident involving a car, and it was when a minivan suddenly turned into a diagonal parking spot while I was riding parallel to it's rear door, causing me to go over the hood of said minivan. This would not happen with the reversed diagonal, as the driver would come to a stop, and then back up, giving cyclists plenty of opportunity to see that the car was parking and get out of it's way.

  3. I could see how this could also reduce doorings.

  4. My only concern is the plethora of incompetent drivers who are barely able to drive forward. Asking them to back up may be more than they can handle (especially along with texting, drinking coffee and gabbing on the phone).