Have you noticed any campers parking on city streets in the Twin Ports? A few of us were talking the other day about how we are seeing campers showing up in different spots around town where people are living in them.

This has been happening for years across the country, especially in outrageously priced housing communities in California. But, let's be real here. The cost of housing in the Twin Ports has been a problem. It's pretty darn expensive. So it appears there are some people who are living in their motorhomes, driving around from place to place. But is it legal for them to park on residential streets?

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The answer quite frankly is no. I've done some digging in both the Duluth and Superior City ordinance and it is quite clear that it is illegal.

No person shall park, store or occupy any trailer or recreational vehicle in, on or upon any place or
premises situated outside an approved and duly licensed trailer camp; but nothing contained in this ordinance
shall prohibit the parking or storing of only one unoccupied trailer in a private garage, driveway or in a rear
yard located anywhere within the city of Duluth, provided that no living quarters shall be maintained, for a
period in excess of 35 consecutive days and 60 total days in any calendar year, nor any business carried on,
or profession practiced in such trailer, during all of the time such trailer is so parked or stored

To summarize, you can't park your camper on the street, but you can park it in your backyard, driveway, or garage as long as someone isn't living in it for an extended period of time.

In Superior they restrict vehicles from parking over night if they meet the following criteria.

No person owning or having control of any truck, trailer, truck power unit, tractor, bus or recreation vehicle in excess of 10,000 pounds gross weight, or over 16 feet in length, or having an enclosed area of a height of more than eight feet from the roadway, shall park the same upon any street, avenue or public way in the city between the hours of 7:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. Two-hour parking will be allowed between 7:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m. The provisions of this subsection shall not be deemed to prohibit the lawful parking of such equipment upon any street, avenue or public way in the city for the actual loading or unloading of goods, wares or merchandise, providing, however, the "loading" and "unloading," as used in this section, shall be limited to the actual time consumed in such operation. The common council may, however, designate specific truck parking zones.

The ordinance in Superior pretty much rules out any camper. Even if it's lightweight, if it's over 16 feet long it can't stay on the street overnight. So what if it's a truck camper? Those would be considered to have an enclosed area 8 feet or higher from the roadway. It's clear that the law was created to prevent people from camping on residential streets.

It's also a safety concern in our climate. Some of these older RVs are running on old, poorly service furnaces that risk leaking carbon monoxide inside. As we approach the coldest days of winter, this is a rising concern.

So now you know, it's illegal. If you have someone living out front of your house, it's up to you what you want to do about it. You could always try to talk to the person and get to know them. Maybe they are having a hardship. If it's a safety concern you could always contact the police.

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