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Firm Makes Profit on Polite Double-Parkers

A Kremlin tower is reflected in the windshield of a car double parked and blocking other vehicles on Ulitsa Nikolskaya on Wednesday. The sign says “Oh, sorry, I’m not here for long” and provides a phone number. Vladimir Filonov

At least one company has learned how to make a profit on the city’s deficiency of parking places.

Drivers who double-park and block other vehicles can now stop scribbling hand written notes to be left under their windshields and instead can spend 200 rubles ($7) on a permanent solution from Art.Lebedev Studio, which is available in different colors and politely tells the parking violator’s victims, “Oh, sorry, I’m not here for long.” The violator’s phone number is also clearly visible in pre-printed digits.  A spokesman for the manufacturer declined to say how many have been sold since sales began at the start of this year.   

There are around 300,000 total parking spaces in the capital’s central district. By 2016, the Moscow transportation department is planning to add 35,000 parking spaces inside buildings, while reducing the number of spaces on the streets. Another 150 sites are currently being reviewed as possible parking lots.

But with about 3.5 million cars in the capital and 150,000 of them trying to park in the center of the city each day, the problem of double-parking is not likely to disappear soon. This is despite the work of roving traffic inspectors who began patrolling the streets of Moscow in April in order to photograph improperly parked vehicles and send the perpetrator by mail a fine of 3,000 rubles.

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