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Trend Watch: Worldwide Efforts to Aid and Protect Women Drivers Who Cannot Park Well

Don't shoot the messenger, but I need to report on a worldwide trend I'm detecting: the creation of special parking spots and rules to deal with the physical limitations women may have when trying to park their cars.

I first noticed this back in 2009, when a Jonathan Turley post pointed out that in South Korea, special pink painted parking spots have been created "to give extra assistance to female drivers." The pink spots are 2.5 meters wide rather than the standard 2.3 meters (see a photo of a pretty pink parking spot here). In case you are thinking that maybe the pink spots are simply for expectant mothers, think again. As Korea Beat reported at the time, the pink spots are drawn wider specifically to "offer[] aid to women drivers unskilled at parking."

Next up in the global crusade to help women parkers was the nation of Croatia. As shown here on the Sociological Images blog, ladies parking spots have been created in Croatia adjacent to handicapped spots that are approximately 50 percent wider than standard spaces. Plus, they have a pretty pink line on the wall.

This week, however, the ladies parking issue took a new turn. Sometimes, it appears, the carrot of a large pink parking spot is insufficient, and you need to use the stick, too. That is what Gallus Strobel, mayor of the small town of Triberg, Germany, has now implemented via the town's new parking garage policy. As The Local reports, Strobel has now supplemented the municipal garage's 12, extra-wide and better-lit spaces already set aside for women with special parking spaces designated for men -- "because they're harder to get into." According to Strobel,

the men's spaces require the driver to pull in at an angle, and avoid hitting cement pillars. They are an "attraction" for any ambitious driver, Strobel told the daily Süddeutsche Zeitung.

"But men are, as a rule, a little better at such challenges," he told the paper.

Strobel adds that women are welcome to take on the challenge of parking in the men's spaces if they wish, and admitted that, "of course, there are also great women drivers!"

Posted by Bruce Carton on July 10, 2012 at 04:20 PM | Permalink | Comments (3)


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