LETTER: Change in Parking Rules Could Prevent Scary Scenario

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To the Editor:

My nightmare came to pass Friday evening. A fire truck, lights flashing, was unable to pass down Hall Avenue because of parked cars. In the event, there appeared to be no active fire emergency, but what if there had been? I have lived on Fairview Avenue for 26 years, and every summer, I decry the slalom course that our neighborhood becomes, as people park their oversized vehicles (poorly sometimes) on both sides of narrow streets.

I have long said that a fire truck would not be able to reach a burning building, and evidently I was right.

I implore the City to initiate one-side-of-the-street-only parking, as is the case in some parts of Waltham. Surely all these cars, which manage to find places to park during the winter full ban, can find places in the summer as well. And we will not have to worry that emergency vehicles cannot reach us when we need them.

Ilana Hardesty
Fairview Avenue

Letters to the Editor can be sent to watertownmanews@gmail.com

7 thoughts on “LETTER: Change in Parking Rules Could Prevent Scary Scenario

    • Sounds logical where needed and while we are being logical let’s eliminate the winter parking ban that is needed 2-4 times a year and replace it with an as-needed system. It isn’t 1980; we have ways to notify people of a snow emergency.

    • This is the same thing that is happening on Highland Ave with the new curbs they are putting up. They are actually making Highland Ave narrower. With cars parked on both sides of the street a car much less a fire truck cannot make it thru. This is a disaster waiting to happen.

  1. Well the problem is being made significantly worse because they keep on expanding the size of sidewalks, even on side streets, every time they redo a street. What they are doing on Highland Ave is absolutely insane. When their done, if anyone parks on one side along, the road will only have room for one car to pass. On top of that they’re enlarging the corners, so turning on and off the street becomes dangerous.
    I can see going to one side parking in some instances. But it’s it’s insane to think we do it citywide. If we’re going to use Waltham as a model, they allow on street parking year round unless there’s a snow emergency.

  2. I think the winter parking ban should remain in place. This keeps awareness of not having too many cars for individual houses or apartments front of mind. If new people move here and there are no parking limits, more renters or owners and their vehicles may move into apartments or houses that can’t accommodate more cars in the winter months and our streets will be cluttered and possibly unsafe.

    If we have a bad winter, the snow builds up against the sidewalks and streets and narrows the streets until we get snow melting. With small or no green space between some sidewalks and streets, there is very little space for the snow, especially on narrower streets. We need to maintain as much space as possible for emergency vehicles.

    We have all managed to follow this system for a long time. Although it may be inconvenient for some people to have to pull into their driveways, I prefer inconvenience over impediments for saving people’s lives in emergencies.

    I would also like to see some type of system put into place so that parking is not allowed on the street on certain days each month so that street cleaning personnel can easily do their jobs and maintain our streets. If the trucks have to go around cars as happens now, by the time the truck turns back into the curb some neighbors’ houses get missed and that is not fair to them.

  3. Joan, I strongly agree with you on all your points. Cars should not be permitted to be left on the street 24/7, in some cases for weeks at a time. The 2 Hr. parking limit on residential side street should be enforced in all neighborhoods. Enforcement has become too lax over the years. Having contractor work performed or receiving a large delivery by truck are always a problem since the streets have become permanent parking lots. Abuses of on street parking privileges is just another of many issues that have degraded the quality of life in Watertown.

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