Mayor Starts Talks About Alternate Side Parking Downtown
Without cars blocking the curbs, street sweepers could more effectively remove trash and debris.
City streets could be cleaner but parking could be trickier next year because Mayor Josh Cohen hopes to add street cleaning restrictions to parking in Ward One.
Street cleaning regulations also known as alternate side parking specify which side of the street people can park their cars on from day-to-day. Cohen said the point is to give street sweepers the ability to reach the curbs so they can remove debris and trash that's often blocked by parked cars.
"We’ve had a couple of causal conversations with Josh about it," said Joe Budge, president of the Ward One Residents Association. "We have indicated that we would be amenable to doing an experiment."
Alternate side parking is one idea in Cohen's larger plan for cleaning up the downtown area. On Tuesday, he unveiled the city's new street cleaning machine that's designed to dissolve gum. This summer, public works employees weeded streets, replaced pavers and repainted curbs and lampposts around downtown.
Budge and the mayor both think alternate side parking could make Annapolis cleaner if it's implemented properly.
"All the leaves and other crud that’s in the streets just stays there," Budge said. "Obviously you can’t do alternate sides of the street on every street every day, or it would just be pandemonium."
The restrictions would ideally only apply for certain hours during day and only affect certain streets on each day, Budge said.
Similar rules for street cleaning exist in a number of cities, including New York and Baltimore.
Juliet Thompson, who chairs the association's parking committee, will be the point person on the project as it moves forward. Budge said Thompson will work with the mayor and the city starting in 2013 to "see if we can figure out something that would work."