Monday, June 27, 2011

Bye-Bye Parking

Baga Toiruu (Little Ring Road) is being totally overhauled and repaved. Drivers will soon be gliding along pot-hole free streets. But the city is strangely removing parking areas along this road. For example, in front of the Flower Center (where Peace Ave and Baga Toiruu meet) they have blocked off the parking area. The same has been done in front of the Golomt Bank up the road and other spots. Whether there is a logical explanation for this, or its just bad planning, is unknown. 

One explanation is that the planners may be trying to increase green spaces where parking areas once were. But even if there are more green spaces, the traffic pile ups caused by a lack of parking could make matters worse. Drivers will inevitably have to stop to do business here and they will end up blocking courtyard entrances or perhaps they will just stop on the road and block a lane. I am including two photos below. 

The first is the blocked off entrance to Golomt Bank. Now that customers cannot park here they are going to have to drive around looking for parking elsewhere, causing more cars on the road.

The second picture is what is think is better planning - a sidewalk, a small green area, and parking area. A good combination in a busy, commercial part of town.

The new road barrier blocks parking spaces in front of this bank. Customers may end up blocking a lane if they need to do business here. Or they are going to scramble around looking for limited parking in other areas, causing more traffic.
This example on Tourist Street (near Zanabazar Museum) is a good use of sidewalk, green space and parking. 

1 comment:

  1. Excellent comments about Baga Toiruu. I happen to run a café here, and have a bakery, and my customers are complaining bitterly that now they have no place to stop or park to make their purchases or to spend half an hour, while meeting their friends for coffee and cake! There are many restaurants and pubs, who all are losing a lot of business because of this. This will be felt by the tax collectors too, when they see how seriously the income of these establishments are affected! Who wants to drive to a place for dinner or lunch, when they know there is no parking at all on the whole road???
    Widening the road will only lead to more chaos on the road, as the undisciplined drivers of Ulaanbaatar will not use the extra lanes to learn road discipline and I foresee utter chaos with mindless lane changing and constant traffic log jams.
    It would have made more sense to create a reasonable amount of parking slots in front of the many business outlets, rather than condemning every shop owner to a substantial reduction of income!