Quick link, because I have no words

China shopping centre builds ‘car park for women’:

Official Wang Zheng told AFP news agency the car park was meant to cater to women’s “strong sense of colour and different sense of distance”.

It has wider spaces to better suit women drivers and is painted ‘pink and light purple to appeal to female tastes’.

(Via ghostlove.)

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About Chally

Chally is a student by day, a freelance writer by night, a scary, scary feminist all the time, and a voracious reader whenever she has a spare moment. She also blogs at Zero at the Bone. Full bio here.
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30 Responses to Quick link, because I have no words

  1. Lauren says:

    I can’t even work up the fizz to say something funny about this story, because the whole idea of a LADY PARKING LOT is so fucking condescending.

    AND YET, I wonder when they’ll build a parking lot for women like me (read: lazy), who only want to park directly outside the front door of any building. I envision many, many front doors and only one row of parking spaces. It will naturally be a very long building.

  2. Femnist says:


  3. Any woman who can park in the Seton Hall University parking lots can park anywhere. Seriously, those spaces aren’t even legal.

  4. piny says:

    Well thank God. Ever since I got my period again I can’t see in three dimensions.

  5. Chally says:

    @piny: *snorts*

  6. Freya says:

    On one hand, the idea of having to have bright colors and wider parking spaces is offensive.

    On the other hand, a well-lit, well-monitored parking lot that’s off-limits to men? I’d never park anywhere else!

    In the end, I think most women’s desire for safety would overcome their distaste for the offensive messages.

  7. Chally says:

    I agree. I wish the focus was on men, though. Also, I get the impression it’s more about teh wimminz causing accidents than with their safety in mind!

  8. Bagelsan says:

    Also, I get the impression it’s more about teh wimminz causing accidents than with their safety in mind!

    Yeah, the wider parking spaces are definitely about the terrible lady drivers … unless that extra bit of space is there to accommodate the little electric fences and man-sniffing ferocious guard dogs? Then I’d park there. I love big puppies. :D

  9. Bagelsan says:

    Nothing beats my idea of having every woman keep a trained douchebag-seeking attack ferret up each sleeve, though. China should get on that.

  10. lauredhel says:

    Ah, I dream of spaces a metre wider, but it’s got nothing to do with my ladyparts or gender ID. Anyone who’s tried to load and unload kids in carseats, or get in and out of a car in tiny spaces while stiff and sore in the muscles and joints – or both – can no doubt empathise.

  11. Athenia says:

    I bet menz with their fancy cars would like wider spaces too! LOL

  12. Sammy says:

    Well, in Germany, the best spots in car parks are reserved for female drivers and female drivers with kids (usually not men with kids) for reasons of safety – these parking spots usually have better lighting and are closer to the cash machine than others.

    Women statistically need about 5% wider parking spots than men, because of their breasts, according to Germaine Greer…

  13. Sacha says:

    This makes me so angry.

    Yes, car parks could be better designed. They could be more secure, have better lighting and have spaces that allowed you to open the doors once the car was parked; however, I don’t want these things because I’m a women, I want them because they would make the world a better place for everyone.

  14. preying mantis says:

    “Ah, I dream of spaces a metre wider, but it’s got nothing to do with my ladyparts or gender ID. Anyone who’s tried to load and unload kids in carseats, or get in and out of a car in tiny spaces while stiff and sore in the muscles and joints – or both – can no doubt empathise.”

    Yeah, I saw that and thought the same. I was sure even before reading the reasoning that they did it under some douchebag “ladies can’t drive lol” assumption, but more room to get squirming progeny, armloads of purchases, or less-than-cooperative bodies into and out of the vehicle without so much fuss is going to be a help to a lot of people. There’s a reason well-designed handicapped and courtesy spaces have an ample corridor between them and the next space on top of generally being larger.

  15. Phrone says:

    I remember a while back ago South Korea did something like this. Parking spots for women is a good idea if it’s meant to increase safety, because women are disproportionately at risk for being victims of crime.

    I just wish that was more of the emphasis, not “lolol women can’t drive”. :/ And the pink’s not necessary.

  16. sophia says:

    upon reading this i am caught between wanting to laugh cus of the absurdity and the idea that men actually drive better than woman (? i just think most people are bad drivers). and cry because of the stereotyping. if it is for woman’s safety i am all for feeling safer but i don’t think that is why…for some odd reason…

  17. Erica A says:

    Am I the only person who finds the ‘pink and light purple combo’ offensive?

    Not because of the wimmin-will-like-it idea, mind you, but just as a generally horrible color combination?

  18. Alara Rogers says:

    Men are not better drivers than women by any objective measure.

    They may be better *parkers*. But when you measure their accident record against miles driven, they start out vastly worse than girls when they’re teens (so much so that boys may pay up to six times what teen girls do for car insurance), and by the time they’re mature adults in their 50’s, they’ve gotten 75% more driving experience than women of the same age, but have only achieved a 15% improvement in the rate of fender benders. And men are involved in 3 times more fatal accidents than women; mature adult women do have 15% more accidents per million miles driven than mature adult men, but the difference is pretty much entirely in low-speed no-injury accidents.

    It seems to me that women are inherently better drivers than men, and it takes fifty more years of living under patriarchy, letting men do the driving and foregoing the driving experience themselves, being told that they’re lousy drivers, for men to catch up and surpass them… and men don’t surpass them at a rate consistent with how much more driving men do.

    (Also, the study was done in 1998, when the oldest cohort of women being measured would have become first eligible to drive in 1950 or so… I predict that if they do the study again ten years from now, women who learned to drive in 1970 will show life-long superiority to men in their driving ability. You need to actually get on the road and drive to become a good driver, and I suspect we need to get to the world created by second wave feminism before women will have started clocking anywhere *close* to men’s lifetime mileage.)

    This is all a tangent, since the article’s about parking, not driving, but it actually wouldn’t shock me if women were worse at parking than men — at super low speeds, that’s pretty much all spatial perception. Once you get to speed, you start factoring in risk assessment, which women are probably better at than men (or at least in terms of “overcautious = get to the destination slower, reckless = dead” risk assessments.) Men’s greater spatial perception may allow them to figure out how to shave their lane changes and braking closer than women would dare, which means that there’s a lot less leeway for them if they make a terrible mistake in judgement.

  19. Lurkin Merkin says:

    I drive a minivan (which is embarrassing to admit, but I frequently transport lots of stuff to various places – so it works for me), and I have parked it in some ridiculous spaces, quite well and with great success. In an even smaller vehicle I’m like an unstoppable parking monster. Its nice however, not to have to squeeze yourself through a tiny crack because you can barely open the door because you’re wedged into a teensy space and don’t want to smash the car next to you. Pink and purple is a horrible color scheme though. Purple + any variation of red is the only color combination that actually makes me feel somewhat nauseous. True story.

  20. ACG says:

    One wonders that these helpless, incompetent little women are given driver’s licenses in the first place.

    (Although I wouldn’t hate better lighting and more security in a parking lot.)

    (Unless the better lighting revealed that the parking lot was actually pink and purple. Then it might be better to just stumble around in the dark.)

  21. Kyra says:

    Be careful with that thought, ACG, they might pull a Saudi Arabia.

    Why don’t they have a lot with wider spaces and call it the “people who can’t park well lot?”

  22. PharaohKatt says:

    Alara Rogers:
    No. Just, no.

  23. Jamie says:

    This reminds me of the Women Only subway trains in Japan. Giving women a safe spot is good, yes, but how about educating the men not to GRAB or FONDLE women in the first god damn place, eh?

    Seriously, they’re tackling the problem by… it’s like, I dunno, slapping a patient for getting sick and telling them what not to do to prevent getting sick after they’ve gotten sick…?

    Sorry, the stupid has hurt my ability to think straight.

  24. Marksman2000 says:

    Banning SUV’s in any parking garage would be a greater benefit.

    Trying to cram a vehicle that large into a narrow space means a guaranteed dent in my door when the SUV driver nonchalantly flings his/her door open.

  25. http://feministlookingglass.com/2009/12/30/chinese-feminine-parking-lot/

    […] the manager of the shopping center said that the new parking lot would appeal to women’s “strong sense of colour and different sense […]

  26. lemur says:

    OMG ThickRed Glasses. You got to SHU too?

  27. Adrian says:

    ‘Why don’t they have a lot with wider spaces and call it the “people who can’t park well lot?”’

    THIS. There are many men among us (my father included) who can’t park. I’d say the worst parkers would be, I dunno, BEGINNING DRIVERS or something.

  28. You know, just fyi….in Malaysia there is a shopping mall that have a parking lot just for women. It is not colorful or have bigger spaces but its closes to one entry, more brightly lid and they have security guards rounding the area all the time. And yes, more cctv.

    And I like parking there too seeing that in Malaysia many women are abducted at parking lots.

  29. Ledasmom says:

    Would anyone ever park in a “people who don’t park well” lot? Driving seems to be one of those things that nobody wants to admit to doing badly.
    What I hate about SUVs in parking lots is being parked between two of them, and having to pull out without knowing if anyone’s about to drive in back of me.

  30. Sappho says:

    Good. I’m fucking good at parking, and I hardly ever even drive. Glad to know that it’s a feminist act to so rebelliously outperform men at maneuvering cars in tight spaces.

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