Parking: No code or ordinances necessary for failure to enforce any of them.


Yesterday there was an instructive conversation about parking, during which several comments made reference to sidewalks and driveways.

No parking meters necessary for sidewalk parking.

Which leads me to believe there is a rule against parking on the sidewalk unless permission has been asked from the Board of Public Works.

New Albany’s code of ordinances offers helpful definitions, and for a fascinating journey into the mysterious realm of the unenforced New Albanian ordinance, visit the site and search “parking.”

You’ll find an exhaustive list of rules that Doug England suspended in the name of … well … something; maybe Maalox remembers. But, as in the NBA, we have continuation, and although the current administration has privately or publicly distanced itself from the England Er(a)(ror), it has refrained from downtown parking enforcement as well.

Understand one crucial point: I couldn’t care less where the Copier Mart car is parked. The point I’m trying to make is that the overall absence of parking enforcement downtown is patently absurd, and contributes to our ongoing, flabby infirmity.

As for the relevant city traffic ordinance definitions (§ 70.02 DEFINITIONS), there’s this one:

SIDEWALK. The portion of a street between the curblines and the adjacent property lines.

And these, all dating from 1939 … before World War II:

PARKING. The standing of a vehicle upon a roadway, otherwise than temporarily for the purpose of and while actually engaged in loading or unloading, or in obedience to traffic regulations or traffic signs or signals.

PRIVATE ROAD OR DRIVEWAY. Every road or driveway not open to the use of the public.

ROADWAY. The portion of a street between the regularly-established curblines or improved and intended to be used for vehicular traffic.

STREET. Every way set apart for public travel, except footpaths.

TRAFFIC. Pedestrians, ridden or herded animals, vehicles, streetcars and other conveyances using any street for the purpose of travel.

VEHICLE. Every device by which any person or property is or may be transported upon a public highway, except devices moved by human power or used exclusively upon stationary rails.

(Ord. 4074, passed 11-12-1936; Ord. 4139, passed 11-27-1939)

Then there’s this.


(A) (1) No person shall stop, stand or park a vehicle in any of the following places:

(a) On a sidewalk ;

(b) In front of, or otherwise blocking access to, a public or private drive;

(D) For the purpose of this section, a DRIVEWAY shall be defined as a private road giving access from a public way to a building on abutting grounds.

(E) Only authorized and constructed curb cuts and driveways permitted by the city shall be used for ingress and egress. Driving, parking or stopping across the curb, tree lawn or sidewalk is not permitted.

If the sidewalk begins at the curbline and ends at the property line, then the whole expanse of concrete in question is, indeed, the sidewalk. And, if it’s a driveway, given Barturtle’s research on the building that used to stand there, it isn’t supposed to be blocked. And, if it is a “tree lawn” or verge, it isn’t supposed to be a parking space, either.

But see, it doesn’t matter, because the city enforces none of it.

And we wonder why we’re perpetually backward.