Decision delayed pending feedback at community-input meeting and council workshop

The Fairview City Council is considering enforcement of a two-hour time limit in the Fairview Village business district.

Anchored by City Hall at 1300 N.E. Village St., Fairview Village is a mixed residential and commercial area where most parking is limited to on-street spots.

The council passed an ordinance at its Tuesday, June 6, meeting giving it authority to enforce parking restrictions in the city, but did not enact specific restrictions.

A resolution to create two-hour parking limits in the village was removed from the agenda because of opposition and concern voiced by Fairview citizens.OUTLOOK PHOTO: MATT DEBOW - The Fairview City Council is gathering more input to possibly enact a two-hour parking restriction in the Fairview business district because of limited on-street parking.

"We pulled the resolution tonight that would have let us follow through on the ordinance, and we decided to pull that because we will have (at least one) community meeting, and we'll see what happens with that," Fairview Mayor Ted Tosterud said. "At the same time we'll do more research on the parking."

The council scheduled a public forum for 6 p.m. Tuesday, June 19, at City Hall, and the council will hold a workshop at 6 p.m. Wednesday, June 20, to discuss information gathered at the forum. It could pass a resolution regarding parking at its next regular meeting.

The following issues will be discussed at the community meeting:

  • n
  • Is a limit on parking needed in the identified area?

  • If a parking zone is established, what should the criteria be?

  • What hours of the day would the zone be enforced?

  • What days of the week should it be enforced?

  • What areas would be included in the zone?

  • Would there be any exceptions to the criteria?

    Local voices

    The issue first emerged on April 4 when a citizen asked the council to enact parking restrictions to mitigate limited on-street parking in the business district.

    Since then the council has received written and verbal comments both in favor and in opposition.

    Four residents spoke in opposition on Tuesday.

    Jennifer Jacobs, a Village Street resident, said parking near her house has rarely been an issue, and there are other parking problems in Fairview that are much worse, such as at the intersection of Northeast Park Lane and Northeast Market Drive.

    "There are a lot of other issues with parking in Fairview that are not being addressed," she said. "I feel like we're kind of being singled out."

    Brian Cox, who has worked and lived on Village Street since 2003, agreed that parking on the street does not appear to be a problem. About 25 to 30 clients visit Cox's social work practice each week.

    "I have not heard one complaint from my clients on parking," Cox said. "I'm a little discouraged and dismayed that there'd be a couple complaints, and the first (proposed) solution is to disenfranchise the people on Village Street who have been there for a while."

    Two commenters asked why the council needed to pass an ordinance if the resolution was pulled.

    "The ordinance gives us the framework to do something if something needs to be done," Councilor Brian Cooper responded.

    Cooper, along with Councilor Keith Kudrna, said they hope to work with citizens to find solutions to parking issues.

    "I'm looking forward to a community meeting where we can all craft something that's going to go into the future," Cooper said.

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