Gerry Kaiser, P.E.: Director of Public Works
Monday – Thursday 7:30 am – 4:30 pm
Friday 7:30 am – 4:00 pm
Back-In Angle Parking
Back-in angle parking may be something new to the Fox Cities, but it can be found communities across the country. As part of a project to review the existing parking conditions at a location on North Water Street, it became evident that the benefits of back-in angle parking just might be what’s needed to address the problems that have plagued parking there for years. Check out the information below on how to back-in angle park and why the City is trying it out:
What is back-in angle parking?
Unlike the more common front-in angle parking, instead of pulling forward into a stall first and then backing, back-in angle parking has the stall lines flipped so you back into a stall first and pull forward when leaving. Here’s a graphic as to how back-in angle parking works:
Why even consider back-in angle parking?
- Unlike front-in angle parking, the backing maneuver takes place into an empty stall, not into live traffic.
- There’s no backing blind into traffic. Back-in angle provides better eye-to-eye contact between drivers, bicyclists, and other road users, especially if the parked vehicle is next to a larger parked vehicle.
- Trunks and tailgates are safely accessible at the sidewalk.
- Children are better protected, because the open car door directs them away from traffic and towards the sidewalk.
- Studies have shown consistently that back-in angle parking reduces the likelihood of crashes. (Tucson, AZ; Portland, OR; Seattle, WA; Pottstown, PA)
- Back-in angle parking isn’t new: it has been successfully implemented in many communities across all parts of the US. Just to name a few: Arlington, VA; Baltimore, MD; Birmingham, AL; Des Moines, IA; Honolulu, HI; Indinapolis, IN; Knoxville, TN; Marquette, MI; Missoula, MT; Montreal, QC (Canada); Olympia, WA; Peoria, IL; Salt Lake City, UT; and Wilmington, DE.
- Back-in angle parking has additional advantages over parallel parking. It is simpler to maneuver and offers more capacity.
Where is the city implementing back-in angle parking?
The city has been testing back-in angle parking on West North Water Street adjacent to the YMCA and St. Paul’s Church. The adjustments were implemented on July 22, 2016.
Why is North Water Street considered a good candidate for back-in angle parking?
- There will be a loading zone that will be opposite to the parking area. Back-in angle parking removes the risk of drivers backing too far into the loading zone.
- West North Water Street is one-way, removing the risk of improper driver behavior associated with back-in angle parking on two-way streets.
- The back-in angle parking is only being tested on a one-block section. Other parking options will be available close by.
- The parking stalls will be wider than the existing stalls, allowing for more room for drivers to back into and for individuals to access side doors.
- Stalls will be marked at a 45º angle, making it easier to back into over steeper-angled stalls.
- Since the users will primarily be YMCA and St. Paul’s patrons, better outreach can be achieved than if it were adjacent to a retail area.
Want to learn more about back-in angle parking?
- Check out the The Fresh Take with Josh Dukelow radio interview on back-in angle parking by clicking here. We also have been hosting information booths at events like Communityfest and farmers markets.
- W. North Water St. – Poster of New Layout (with Map)
- W. North Water St. – YMCA Flyer