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Easton Could Target "Lazy" Double Parking

City councilman looks for ways to stop people in Easton from double parking when spaces are open.

There's double parking, and then there's "lazy double parking."

The former we're all well acquainted with: someone pulls up in front of a home or a business, can't find a place to park, and leaves their car in the street for a -- hopefully -- short visit.

The latter is a little more tricky: someone double-parking even though there are parking spaces at the ready.

It's something Easton City Councilman Jeff Warren hopes to stop.

"It really is becoming a problem in many sectors of the city," Warren told his colleagues at Monday night's council meeting.

In the past six months, Easton's only given out about seven tickets for double parking, Warren said. Yet he's hearing complaints about it from business owners. 

Warren said many of the complaints have come from the 200 block of Northampton Street.

Helping behind the counter of his son's store the Easton Outdoor Company, Skip Fairchild said he sees a fair share of double parking in that neighborhood. He noted that there's a public lot a few doors away that not everyone seems to use.

"When there's weekend activity, parking is tricky," said Fairchild. "But on a day like today...look outside."

Indeed, there were several open spaces along the block. 

Next month, Warren plans to propose an ordinance similar to one done in Allentown.

Adopted last month, the ordinance increases the fine for double parking when an open space is available. According to the Express-Times, Allentown's initial double parking fine is $100. People who are deemed "lazy" double parkers would pay an additional $100.

But what if someone double parks and claims that a nearby open space wasn't open when they arrived?

"We'll have to talk about that," Warren said. 

The next council committee meeting is scheduled for Oct. 9. Meanwhile, Mayor Sal Panto said he'd like to tackle another front on Easton's parking wars: people using the city's private lots for public parking.

Richard Coleman September 26, 2012 at 10:49 AM
What is worse than what is described above as lazy double parking is when someone double parks in the street directly next to an open space. I remember South Third in the 59s where some times the double parking was so bad you had to parallel park to double park.
Kay Larsen September 26, 2012 at 01:00 PM
The plain and simple truth is that many drivers today no longer have the ability to parallel park, and as a result they rely on " lazy" double parking. Used to be parallel parking was a skill that was used; but since today people in the burbs have lovely driveways and the malls, shopping centers, restaurants, hospitals, churches, doctors offices and schools most all have lovely parking lots, the skill of parallel parking is generally not needed and has become a lost art. Add to this the fact that what may be a simple five minute errand becomes a fifteen or twenty minute errand if one has to go into a public lot, scrabble for money for the meter and then walk back to wherever one wanted to go in the first place and then walk back. I would say that merchants in Easton should be glad to see a car on the street no matter what and not drive away what business they have. They may regret the day they complained so much about "lazy" double parking.
Amend September 26, 2012 at 02:07 PM
@Kay- Last I knew, parallel parking was included as part of the test for a PA drivers license. Trying to make excuses for people's inability to adhere to the simpilest aspects of operating a motor vehicle by saying "that's how they do it in the burbs" is lame at best, and dismissive towards those trying to content with the issue. As for driving away business, Easton is bussling these days. That's why double parking/improper parking is becoming an issue.
louis kootsares September 26, 2012 at 06:30 PM
its true kay when you do it every day its easy but when you do not its a skill soon lost
Kay Larsen September 26, 2012 at 06:49 PM
Yes, Amend, parellel parking is still part of the PA drivers' license test--the most dreaded part. And yes people learn how to do it, they do it for the test, and that is the last time that most ever use the skill. As far as Easton bustling these days, I do not know when you are in town (perhaps on Saturday for the farmer's market; but when I drive around town on weekdays, it is dead as a door nail. Tell me, if things are going so well, why do stores and restaurants close their doors almost as fast as they open them? I am not making excuses for those horrible miscreants who lazy double park, Amend, but I am offering some reasonable explanations for why it occurs. And FYI, I have never lazy double parked. I live in Easton and I parallel park every day of the year; but I do have people who come to visit who are desperate to find a corner parking spot on my block because they can't parallel park to save their lives. They also tell me that is one reason they never come to Easton to shop or eat.
louis kootsares September 26, 2012 at 08:30 PM
again kay your right my idea of bustling was when easton had 2major department stores 3 5and 10 stores 7 men stores 48 restaurants and other various stores and you could stand on the top of 5th street look down to the circle and not see any sidewalk and the businesses all made money thats bustling
Amend September 26, 2012 at 09:21 PM
I always love how people bring up Easton's past as a way of pointing out how it's going nowhere now. I live and own a business in the downtown. This weekend Easton was busy. Typically, Fridays and Saturday's are fairly busy, especially at night. Sometimes that includes Thursday night's too. Lunch time from Wednesday to Friday are also very busy. Just today around noon, on the block my business is on, there wasn't a parking space open and there were 5 vehicles that double parked in the half hour I observed. The Pomeroy building is nearing completion as is two rivers brewing (the old Mt Vernon) and the lipkins building. Construction is under way on the A&D Tile/ WEST building. New businesses are opening all the time even if some do indeed close as well. Is Easton where it was at it's hieght, not yet, but it's definitely moving forward. As it does, issues like double parking become more of a concern. Parallel parking isn't that difficult a task, and yes Kay you are making excuses for their laziness. If you're only skill when it comes to droning is moving forward in a straight line, maybe you should reconsider how good a driver you truly are.
Kay Larsen September 27, 2012 at 11:28 AM
Must have hit a nerve somewhere, Amend, or you wouldn't be writing insulting remarks.
Andy Novick September 27, 2012 at 11:47 AM
Get rid of your car and get a bicycle...all your parking troubles will be OVER!
louis kootsares September 27, 2012 at 11:50 AM
kay back in the stone ages when easton was really bustling there was double parking all over the place it was a good sign stores were doing business .. its almost saying we cater to the customers.. if double parking is noticable in easton its a good sign , there were some things easton did back in the golden years to control traffic,parking,and increase foot traffic the would work now .. but i will not bore anyone by telling them
Andy Novick September 27, 2012 at 11:53 AM
You already bore me with your comments....
Amend September 27, 2012 at 12:27 PM
@Kay- please explain how my comments were insulting.
Amend September 27, 2012 at 12:36 PM
@louis- you're completely missing the point of the article and the proposed ordinance thru your nostalgia. What's being discussed is people double parking when there are open parking spots. That's lazy. I do believe that there are occasion where double parking should be allowable within reason; deliveries, the elderly, the disabled and residents dropping off children and such, but I don't think allowing it for customer convenience is the same. Rushing into the nearby convenience store for a drink or a pack of smokes is a lame reason to block traffic on the main drag thru town. If that's allowable, then why bother with parking meters and regulations at all.
louis kootsares September 27, 2012 at 02:05 PM
andytechie did you have a helmet on every time you fall off your bike and hit your head?
Andy Novick September 27, 2012 at 02:31 PM
Helmet? We don't need no stinkin' helmet!
louis kootsares September 27, 2012 at 02:50 PM
hahahaha thats what i like, there should be more andytechies your ok, but i am against bicycles double parking especially since they pay no license or road use taxes
Pamela Porter September 27, 2012 at 05:22 PM
For what it's worth, the majority of double parking I've seen when I'm in Easton (usually on the weekends) is on residential streets. Washington Street from the courthouse area to 13th street is especially hazardous.
Kay Larsen September 27, 2012 at 09:40 PM
@ Amend; Please read the last line of your comment above--the one where you accused me of "droning" and implied that my driving skills were questionable. I don't think I drone and as I said in one of my remarks---I have no trouble parallel parking--I do it every single day since I live right here in Easton. Now if that was a typo, and instead of droning you meant driving, well I can assure you, I can drive in a straight line both forwards and backwards, and I can make turns and everything. In my comments (which were purely observational) I don't think I made any references to your skills (or lack thereof)---you are the one who took the conversation down a notch.
Andy Novick September 27, 2012 at 09:53 PM
Kay, I am proud of you, being able to parallel park while DUI...but can you do it sober?

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