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Disturbing photo showing repercussions of outrageous parking policy sparks outrage online: 'They were immediately rendered useless'

Many residents were understandably frustrated.

Many residents were understandably frustrated.

Photo Credit: iStock

One furious Redditor just showed the internet what pedestrians have to deal with in Taiwan, and it's not pretty.

"This is the pedestrian sidewalk space in Taiwan," they said — but from the photo they shared, you'd think it was a parking lot.

In the picture, a covered walkway runs past a line of storefronts. But if you thought "walkway" meant you could walk there, guess again; the path is blocked by a white hatchback. Several mopeds are parked next to it, and what appears to be a motorcycle is visible farther down.

"Taiwan's Ministry of Transportation revised the law to allow such parking," the original poster complained.

Photo Credit: Reddit

According to the Taipei Times, Taiwan in May instituted a set of traffic laws designed to keep pedestrian walkways clear of vehicles. Drivers parked in these areas would have received points for violations.

Building safe, accessible pedestrian walkways has huge benefits for cities. It encourages people to walk instead of going by car, cutting both road traffic and air pollution. The increase in foot traffic also benefits businesses, and of course, individuals get more exercise and fresh air.

However, the Taiwanese government walked back its changes when it received complaints from delivery service providers and taxi drivers who were penalized for parking in the pedestrian zones. According to these groups, there wasn't enough parking they could use. In November, the government rolled back the protections until more temporary parking areas could be established.

Many residents were understandably frustrated. The Vision Zero Alliance, a group with the goal of eliminating traffic deaths and injuries, held a protest and released a statement about the problem: "This has proven yet again that transportation officials might feel apologetic for victims of traffic accidents one day, but forget all about it the next. [Minister Wang Kwo-tsai] changed his tune about the point system, which had only been enforced for four months, simply because of opposition from certain groups."

One Taiwanese Redditor agreed with their assessment. "Being a pedestrian feels literally like s***," they said bluntly.

"I remember when the government put in brand new cycle lanes in downtown Taipei," another commenter said. "They were immediately rendered useless as taxis and other drop off vehicles quickly acquired them."

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