Council discusses downtown, subdivision parkingFebruary 11, 2021
By CANDY NEAL
HUNTINGBURG — Parking in downtown Huntingburg and at Hunters Crossing was tackled at the latest Huntingburg Common Council meeting.
Mayor Steve Schwinghamer told the council Tuesday night that there had been problems with trucks not parking properly on Fourth Street when making deliveries.
“We’ve had concerns about double parking, going in the wrong direction, parking on the wrong side of the street,” he said. “There have been some times when there have been close calls as far as accidents are concerned because of that.”
Therefore, he has told business owners on the street that the city is going to actively enforce the parking rules for the street. Up to now, warnings have been issued.
“I have instructed [Police] Chief [Art] Parks to enforce the requirements of the ordinance that was put together two years ago,” Schwinghamer said. “They can work it out for delivery people.”
Officials have heard concerns from delivery drivers about the limited ability to park and make deliveries on the street since the new redesign that was completed last year. Councilman Glenn Kissling noted that the complaints are coming mostly from drivers, though there have been concerns from a couple merchants as well.
Councilman Jeff Bounds said he’d like to talk to merchants to make sure that all concerns are heard and addressed, if possible. He also asked if they have been told about when and where delivery vehicles can park to make deliveries. Schwinghamer said that information has been sent to the businesses several times, but he doesn’t know if that was forwarded to the delivery companies they work with.
Councilman Steve McPherron said that when the new rules for delivery trucks utilizing Fourth Street were put in place, it was before the street had reopened. “Now that the street has been open for a period of time,” he said, “maybe there’s an adjustment [to be made].”
McPherron suggested that officials could talk to the merchants, possibly at a Huntingburg Merchants Association meeting, to get their views. “Maybe that’s a place where we can have a conversation, at one of their meetings,” he said.
Schwinghamer said he will make arrangements for a meeting with merchants and city officials, including council members.
As of now, the current rules will be enforced, Schwinghamer said, but they can be changed if the council makes that determination.
“If you all want to change the ordinance, then that is up to you to do that,” he told the council.
Council members also talked about parking restrictions for some streets in the Hunters Crossing subdivision. After a lengthy discussion, the council determined that there will no parking on: the north side of Stellar Way from Chestnut to the cul-de-sac; the north side of Raider Court from Niehaus Trail to the cul-de-sac; the west side of Niehaus Trail from Stellar Way to Raider Court; and both sides of Hunters Crossing Pass from Stellar Way to Raider Court, with the understanding that parking will not be allowed on the rest of Hunters Crossing Pass to Progress Parkway, after construction is done on the street.
The parking ordinance passed unanimously.
Councilman Tim Wehr suggested to the council that Hunters Crossing Pass should have no parking on either side of the street. He cited safety reasons, especially near the street’s intersection with Progress Parkway.
“It’s narrow enough, coming off the main thoroughfare, that it will be a really busy road there,” he said.
The other council members agreed with the assessment.
“If you come off of the bypass road, Progress Parkway, and turn onto that street, if you have cars even on one side of that road, it’s going to really pinch traffic,” Bounds said, “not just right there at the intersection but all the way down through there.”
Council members said they wanted to make sure that Jane Hendrickson, subdivision developer, and Jagoe Homes, which is building the houses in Hunters Crossing, know that Hunters Crossing Pass will not have parking on the street prior to them selling lots along that street. “The homeowners that buy them ought to know that there’s not going to be parking allowed on that street before they make their deposit,” Bounds said.
The council also:
• Established a fund, titled the Old Town Hall Improvements Fund, and accepted $160,000 from resident Phyllis Menke that will be deposited into the fund. The fund will be used to make improvements and renovations to Old Town Hall. Others can also contribute to the fund, City Attorney Phil Schneider said.
• Heard from Schwinghamer that the city has completed its purchase of the building at 317 E. Fourth St. and has sold property at 14th and Main streets.
• Approved writing off $11,617 in bad utility debt. The debts will still be pursued for collection, Clerk-Treasurer Tom Dippel said.
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