Kyoto is finally creating parking space for cyclists.
Cyclists now park more or less where they please, and only rarely fear the tow trucks that come around once a month or so and take illegally parked bikes to a lot in deep south Kyoto. (The city puts up posters in advance announcing the date the trucks will come, which means that only morons, drunks, and foreigners get towed.)
Over ground and underground lots do exist for bikes, but are still few and far between.
As a result, Kyoto, like all Japanese cities, is overrun with bicycles - to the point where it makes walking around them difficult. (I write this as a serious bike commuter, who always parks in a lot by the Kamo River. However, when I go downtown I often park on the street because there is nowhere else to park.)
However, Oike Dori - the large boulevard that passes by Kyoto City Hall - is now putting up short-term parking spaces.
As part of a campaign to clean up the sidewalks, the city is installing four hundred spaces for parking. Work will be complete by January.
The first 30 minutes are free. After that, it costs 50 yen to for each additional two hours.
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Monday, December 07, 2009