New Series – Move Your Damn Car – Vol. 1

by Prince Of Petworth June 7, 2016 at 10:05 pm 69 Comments


OK, maybe the project took way too long to carry passengers. Maybe it cost way too much money for what we got. Maybe it is beyond comprehension that it doesn’t run on Sundays. We can debate whether or not there should’ve been a dedicated lane but I’m moving beyond that. This is not the fault of the streetcar. This is the fault of the driver of the automobile. Shame on you Scion driver. Shame on you. The world does not revolve around you. You can’t just double park because you’re only going to run into the store “for a second”. No. No sir. NO MORE. Move your damn car and find a spot like everyone else. This nominee was at 4th and H St, NE – the streetcar didn’t catch up to me until 13th Street.

And by the by, this applies to all people double parking on busy streets with or without streetcars, especially during rush hour. I’m talking Georgia Avenue, Connecticut Avenue, you know who you are. I repeat, the world does not revolve around you and your schedule. Move your damn car.

Should you spot a selfish jackwagon double parked in front of a streetcar, or during rush hour please send a photo to [email protected] with a location/time where you saw it. If it turns out there was a life threatening emergency or a baby was being born I promise to offer up a prompt apology.

  • Northzax

    I am fully in favor of busses and streetcars carrying forward facing cameras. Whenever their movement is impeded by illegal parking they should take a photo and issue a ticket by mail. Start issuing $200 tickets for blocking the streetcar (backed up by video) and things will start to change. And if not, the system could use the cash. Figure that would be cheaper than putting a traffic cop on every train.

    • TinkerTaylor

      Agreed. Also, in favor of renaming this series Horse’s Ass Award Nominee. Bad as some of those buildings are, seems even more applicable here.

    • On Capital Heels

      Excellent idea!

    • dcd

      This idea is so smart I am almost certain it will never be implemented. I award you all the points today.

    • Nathan

      Fantastic idea!

    • eggs


    • b

      This is what I say EVERY MORNING on Georgia Ave down by Howard U w the new bus lane. The city could rake in the cash by installing just one stationary camera catching every vehicle other than buses and taxis zipping down that lane. It is infuriating. Supposed to be a $200 ticket but there’s 0 enforcement.

    • anon

      I was just in San Francisco, where my Lyft driver freaked out because she was blocking the bus stop for a bus behind us while waiting to make a right turn. She was like “oh no I hope the bus didn’t take my picture!” So I think some places do this!

    • James W.

      Except that a front-facing camera won’t physically move a vehicle out of the way. That streetcar is essentially immobilized until a tow truck arrives or the driver emerges. I’ve been “stuck” on the streetcar several times as a result. Fortunately the thing only covers the span of a dozen blocks and it’s quicker to just get off and walk.

  • Los

    I see this every morning on Connecticut Ave. If I’m not mistaken, South of Dupont, there is no curbside parking until after 9AM. However, there is always someone parking and not only taking away an entire lane of traffic during rush hour, but creating further congestion as cars and buses try to merge left.

    I say, in addition to a $200 ticket, tow these cars to the most inconvenient place possible

    • OP Anon

      They are sitting there – often for 20 to 30 minutes – waiting for the 9am parking to kick in. This also happens all over the Golden Triangle area on 18th and 19th Streets. They throw their hazards on, sip their coffee, listen to the radio, and pretend to not notice all the traffic building behind them.
      Fine the ever living sh#t out of these assh#les. Nearly all of them are idiots from VA and MD.

    • ah

      This happens everywhere. I have regularly sent service requests, which are “closed” at 9:20 for “no violation because rushhour is over” (despite that doesn’t occur until 9:30.

      My newest favorite is the ice cream vendors who park their cars along 7th Street on the Mall starting around 8am to hold a space for their trucks later. Of course, cops do nothing while an entire lane is blocked.

      • annonny

        Why is it that DC has apparently given up on this kind of enforcement? Is it lack of resources? Writing tickets in the short term would pay for itself and if the problem goes away the city should be able to redeploy whoever does the ticket writing to the next problem on the list. The fact that there is nearly 0 traffic enforcement in DC boggles my mind. Such a ridiculous level of mismanagement and bureaucratic inertia.

  • Reality

    Torch the car.

  • You cannot park on 20th during rush hour. Unfortunately, the parking staatspolizei don’t finish their donuts until 9:15 and must therefore focus their efforts on those who stay at a meter 45 seconds too long.

  • The streetcar was being following by a gang of tow trucks for a while, quickly moving anyone who got in its way. Sad to see that’s no longer the case, I bet those guys were making bank. This might be my new favorite recurring theme series though, now the question is can we expand it to double parking church goers as well?

    • TinkerTaylor

      You ok Justin? After touching the third rail like that . . .

      • No clue what you’re referring to, but yes I’m fine, thanks.

        • lje

          church parking is the third rail of local transportation politics I think is the point

  • zinman

    Just walk down 9th St south of U any time and see at least 5 cars double-parked as their owners hang out at their favorite restaurants. Add beer delivery trucks parking, and it can seem like rush hour any time of day there.

    • Yes! Every time I drive down it, it’s the fastest way for me to get to 395S, I think ‘since when is 9th St the cool new place?’ Everybody and their mother is being dropped off there.
      After my almost 1 hour long drive home, I am frequently met with double parkers on the last block before my street. Yes, I also love that liquor store, but I’m pretty sure you can find yourself a parking spot before shopping there. And the a lot of them will start driving while I’m trying to get around them so I can turn right. Ugh.

      • JohnH

        I think the art gallery/event space is a big culprit.

        • Yeah, all three spots you mention are ALWAYS culprits. I’ve never seen any enforcement.

    • JohnH

      9th between T and U is a disaster – and then when you get down to where the gallery/pet boarding is (between M and N) and then when you get down by Zaytinya. The best part is that usually if they would walk an extra 15 feet they can at least pull into a curbside spot and not be double parked. But heaven forbid they walk anymore!
      This is a problem all over the city and causes problems with traffic. One car illegally parked can back up traffic. This also happens a lot on Florida by Connecticut – in the mornings, delivery trucks would illegally park and block a lane of traffic.
      Overall, DC could do a better job of getting slower traffic out of the way too. It’s amazing to me how many people stay in the lane when turning when they have a whole lane worth of street to use to get out of the way of cars going straight. If DC marked these lanes more consistently as a turn lane, it would greatly help (they do on very few intersections, but it works). Or how many cars stuck behind a car turning left won’t just go around the car turning – it’s just baffling (granted, that’s a dumb driver problem).

  • flieswithhoney

    Happens everyday on 11th and 14th. Bike lane, plus or minus a couple of feet of the traffic lane= free parking. Special shout out to the valet parking/Uber dropoff in front of Masa 14.

    • dcgator

      Haha, seriously! It’s like between S & T, there’s no point even getting into the left lane (or biking in the bike lane)

      • Jeff

        GO NOLES!

    • DRC

      Yup, whenever I rode on 14th, I’d just take the slow lane and not even bother with the bike lane. It was a death wish dodging taxis dropping people off or diving for fares, people making last second right turns, oncoming drivers making left turns, delivery vehicles, or just any random person who decided they needed to drop off or pick up someone. Lazy double parkers was probably the worst thing about living/driving in the city.

  • JDM

    Also, everyone who parks on 16th street. Let’s just stop that now. I don’t care if it’s legal or not – it’s wasteful.

    • majka


    • JohnH

      It’s amazing to me that any parking is allowed on 16th Street other than between say 7 pm – 7 am.

      • Tsar of Truxton

        It shouldn’t even be allowed then. 16th should just be no parking once you are passed Columbia Heights. I would say even in Columbia Heights, but I know parking is difficult in that area. A little further north, parking on any side street is easy, so there is no reason to park on 16th.

        • KenyonDweller

          But traffic flows fine north of Columbia Heights. It’s U Street to Park Road where parking should be eliminated.

          • JS

            I’d go further and say you need to eliminate parking from Spring Rd south. Traffic backs up north of Taylor on 16th due to the sudden disappearance of a traffic lane (due to parked cars outside of the Woodner) at Spring Rd.

      • sometimesadriver

        i think it’s a good thing, as it slows traffic down. if you got rid of parking, cars would just bomb up and down 16th through the city.

    • JS

      + a million to this. I cannot understand why the city lets traffic get backed up for blocks so that ~8 cars can park in front of the Woodner.

    • Ross

      Agree. Driving home from visiting my parents in the Baltimore area, my commute home is just over an hour – 20 minutes of which is sitting in traffic for 4 blocks by the Woodner.

  • Brookielandy

    Also everyone who stops and puts on their hazards in the middle of the street when they are adjacent to a parallel parking spot. Kill with fire. The very facts that the hazards are on indicates you know you’re not supposed to be there. I’ve never lived anywhere with people who are so ridiculously selfish/stupid/rude about parking.

    • anon

      Well, the states (and DC) aren’t helping by dropping the requirement that parallel parking be tested for a driver’s license. There will be just so many more of these drivers who can’t parallel park (until we have cars that will just do it for you).

      • textdoc

        I don’t know which states have recently dropped this requirement, but I think there are some states where it’s never been a requirement. (Or where it was dropped a really, really long time ago.)
        I didn’t learn how to parallel park until I came to the D.C. area.

        • bob

          Maryland dropped parallel parking as a test requirement pretty recently

          • textdoc

            Ah — interesting. I remember my college ex (from Maryland) was always envious/resentful that I didn’t have to parallel park for my driver’s test in North Carolina.

          • I took my test in NC, and I thought I had to parallel park for it, but that was so long ago now that I honestly have no idea and now I’m curious. I will say that one of the people in my house is significantly better at it than the other.

          • timmyp

            There’s no way Maryland even has a driving test. Have you seen these idiots drive?

          • JoDa

            My Midwestern home state dropped the parallel parking requirement something like 25 years ago. Fortunately I got a crash course (no pun intended) in parallel parking in college, but even if the requirement were there on the driver’s test, most people from areas like that would forget before they ended up somewhere like DC since parallel parking is almost never required among the sprawl.
            My personal favorite is delivery trucks parked in the street in front of the loading dock. We mandated a space just for them, and they’re too lazy to use it. That’s my “kill with fire.”

    • Franklin

      I’ve often thought the same thing. I’ve lived in half a dozen cities around the nation in my life and never have I seen such a double parking culture. It’s like it is taught in the local curriculum. The best ones, as you say are the ones who double park right next to a huge, legal curb parking spot they could easily fit in, yet they don’t even bother. Unbelievable.

      • JohnH

        I don’ know if it’s as much of a DC thing as it is a selfish (people just think they’re important/above the law)/nothing will happen thing. I saw a cop going down 9th putting on his sirens behind anyone double parked once and about fainted. Talk about a once in a lifetime opportunity.

        • annonny

          I think it’s more a “nothing will happen to me” issue. No traffic laws are enforced in DC, pretty much ever.

    • timmyp

      YES!!!!! I have never seen this in any other city. This is the laziest group of drivers in the world. Why can’t you just pull in to the open spot. Many times its multiple open spots.
      The city could make a shitload of money if they hired a group of people just to ticket double parkers. Why is this allowed so much???

      • Anonymous

        I think it’s a leftover mentality from when DC was severely under-populated, parking was abundant, and the region was significantly smaller (population wise). You could do things like double-park, mid-block U turns, and not worry about parking availability because there were nowhere as nearly many people on the roads. Those same people – 20 to 30 years – are the same ones complaining about newcomers and interlopers, blocking off “their” parking spot in front of their house, expressing hostility toward pedestrians and cyclists, and generally have the attitude of DGAF while driving.

  • Jamgon

    Hey POPville- does this apply to cars stopped in bike lanes, too? Because if so I can get enough pictures on my commute home during rush hour to keep this feature supplied for months.

    • Anon


  • Truxton Thomas

    The double-parking drives me crazy, especially when there is an available street parking spot nearby. People can’t be bothered even to parallel park.

  • textdoc

    Amen to “And by the by, this applies to all people double parking on busy streets with or without streetcars, especially during rush hour. I’m talking Georgia Avenue, Connecticut Avenue, you know who you are. I repeat, the world does not revolve around you and your schedule. Move your damn car.”
    I am surprised at how much double-parking I see on Georgia Avenue in the northern Petworth/southern Brightwood Park area.

    • Janie4

      Yes – the block between Missouri and the McDonalds up there is the worst! It’s bad enough that they kept the parking in the curb lane after they reconfigured it for the Wal-Mart across the street (now there’s one through-lane and the curb lane). But the insane number of people double parking, parking in the space between the McDonald’s driveways, and parking in the curb lane during rush hour is amazing.

    • Not surprising to me at all really. As someone commented on above, this is without a doubt the highest violating city that I’ve ever driven in. Most other American, or international cities, that I drive in I rarely ever see this happen. The worst city I’ve ever driven in was Casablanca, and even there they didn’t do this lazy (or entitled, however you want to phrase it) BS.

  • Tsar of Truxton

    People do this on 6th all the time during rush hour and it pisses me off. I also don’t believe you should be able to turn left on NY Ave as it creates a huge mess in the afternoon commute.

  • hammers

    This just makes me think of the bit in Always Sunny where Sweet Dee hops out of her car in the middle of a one lane street to talk to The Waitress. Which makes me happy because I love that show.

  • Anon

    Too late to retrofit the street cars with cow catchers?

  • Susan

    Almost every evening rush hour, there are several tour buses parked outside Buca de Beppo on Connecticut just above Florida. They often double park and, on occasion, triple park (three buses side by side), leaving only one lane for traffic going from Connecticut onto Columbia. I’ve seen them double park blocking in other vehicles, as well as blocking the bus stop there. And, usually, they leave the engines running while the passengers are having dinner.

    • OP Anon

      Ugh, I hate those buses. I’m pretty sure that restaurant only exists to service tour bus patrons. It’s empty the rest of the year. Where the hell is MPD? They clog up that busy thoroughfare every evening at rush hour.

    • DC Denizen

      Yes! And it’s starting to happen in front of Lauriol Plaza now too. The other day two tour buses were emptying out in front, both buses double parked. It was forcing the traffic – bikes included to go into the opposite lane on 18th. I couldn’t believe it.

      If the city would just tackle double parking and blocking the box I think 75% of the traffic flow problems would be solved.

  • amo

    How wold 2-3 more busses(like the circulator) going up and down the same strip not have worked better then a flexed lane street car? Its unreal they spend that much money for such a failed project

    • The design has many flaws, but the initial goal was to have it extend all the way to Georgetown.

  • KaloramaRama

    Could we add drivers taking right turns from the center lane around buses at bus stops? Often has same effect when they get hung up by pedestrians crossing in front of their turn, and now they’re blocking the bus, and sometimes the center lane, too!

  • SEDC

    Why we are at it…. why not let the Police know that they cant do it either.

    ie. every cop that stops into Grand China Carryout on South Capitol St when there is a PARKING LOT RIGHT NEXT TO IT!

    • SEDC


  • timmyp

    I think we should start carrying eggs in our cars for these situations. It’s not violent and it let’s the parkers know how you feel about their laziness.

  • SassyinDC

    Same thing on Capitol Hill– Pennsylvania Avenue between 6th and 7th Streets, SE. Always multiple cars blocking the far right lane at all times of the day including rush hour both in the AM and PM. Incredibly annoying, not to mention selfish and entitled behavior by those individuals who perpetuate it.


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