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Thread: Overnight parking of RVs at Walmart

  1. #1
    Cyburbian SW MI Planner's avatar
    Feb 2002

    Overnight parking of RVs at Walmart

    Apparently Walmart encourages RV's and semi-trucks to stay the night in their parking lot, and we've had a few council members complain. I know some Cities have prohibited the overnight parking.

    We're talking a one night stay max, and to the best of our knowledge, they are not cooking out or empyting tanks or anything.

    How do you guys deal with this (or do you?)

  2. #2
    Cyburbian donk's avatar
    Sep 2001
    skating on thin ice
    When I raised this point with a representative from wal mart (VP Properties/Real Estate), I was told point blank that they do not promote the use of their properties for overnight parking. My response was, good, then you won't mind the City placing this condition on your rezoning.

    Another way is to see how your by-law deals with travel trailers and mobile homes as dwelling units. You may have them on a technicality, depending on how things are defined.
    Too lazy to beat myself up for being to lazy to beat myself up for being too lazy to... well you get the point....

  3. #3

    Re: Overnight parking of RVs at Walmart

    Originally posted by SW MI Planner
    How do you guys deal with this (or do you?)
    Our zoning Code prohibits habitiation of mobile homes, RVs, trailers, etc. in all zoning districts.

  4. #4
    Cyburbian Runner's avatar
    Apr 2002
    I'm not sure why you would want to regulate this. As long as it's the typical overnight stop by grandma and grandpa as they pass through town it does not seem to be an issue. If anything they are contributing tax money to the community when they do their incidental shopping on site.

    We have not had problems with persons attempting long term stays or becoming a nusance in other ways. I would think that the property owner would handle this if it did come up. Have others had problems that are now inviting regulation?

  5. #5
    Cyburbia Administrator Dan's avatar
    Mar 1996
    Upstate New York
    Blog entries
    In the zoning code I wrote for my previous employer, camping at Wal-Mart was banned as part of the overall ban on camgrounds. (Most campgrounds in the infamous "Town Next Door" evolved into shoddy mobile home parks; thus, the ban in the town where I worked.)

    The text:

    306.9 Campground, recreational vehicle park

    306.9.2 Definition
    Campground or recreational vehicle park – a site intended for temporary living accommodation for recreational, camping and travel use including, but not limited to, travel trailers, truck campers, camping trailers and self-propelled motor homes.

    306.9.3 Permitted locations
    Campgrounds and recreational vehicle parks are prohibited in all zoning districts, excepting designated camping areas at public parks. “Boondocking,” or using a parking lot for overnight camping, is prohibited.

    I used the term "boondocking" because that's what the Wal-Mart parking lot campers call it.
    Growth for growth's sake is the ideology of the cancer cell. -- Edward Abbey

  6. #6
    Cyburbian Jen's avatar
    Aug 2001

    mobile compounds

    This issue is also heating up the Yukon, Norhwest Territories ,CA of all places. A local RV park is accusing Walmart of stealing their business, Some RV'ers are utilizing the big parking lot at the new Walmart instead of at a designated RV campground operator. Its not the northern lights we see it's the WALMART aargggh. (we love it because of it's stellar market performer though don't we)

    Shantytowns are not campgrounds. If one cannot pursue a recreational activity at a socalled campground, then one is not camping, esp in the lot of a brightly lit big box store![

  7. #7
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
    Apr 2003
    Somewhere between the mountains and the ocean.

    Re: Re: Overnight parking of RVs at Walmart

    Originally posted by prudence
    Our zoning Code prohibits habitiation of mobile homes, RVs, trailers, etc. in all zoning districts.
    In PA, unless you are in a multi municipal zoning plan, you must provide for EVERYTHING. To do this in Reading, we let state that in our Heavy Manufacturing Zone, everything that was not listed some place else in the ordinance is permitted in the HM zone.

    We do not have too many big boxes in our city because it has been a built environment for the past 70 years or longer.
    If you want different results in your life, you need to do different things than you have done in the past. Change is that simple.

  8. #8
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
    Aug 2001
    The Cheese State
    Jen brings up a strong argument. Campgrounds often must be licensed and meet certain health and safety codes, as well as zoning. I doubt a Wal-Mart parking lot complies.

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