Neighborhood parking issue for residents and officials

June 27th, 2015 1:39 am

First Posted: 8/23/2013

Parking in Pittston neighborhoods for many is a daily challenge.

Narrow streets, said City Administrator Joe Moskovitz, is the reason.

It’s a challenge for public safety officials, as well, he said. “But in a lot of the areas, our hands are tied.”

When many of the streets were laid out in the early 1900s, there were few if any cars to worry about. That’s why many streets are so narrow, Moskovitz said.

But issues now are a prevalence of larger vehicles traveling on roadways and parking along them. Add increased pedestrian and bicycle traffic.

“It becomes very complicated,” Moskovitz said.

Parsonage Street, a heavily traveled two-way thoroughfare that goes from North Main Street near Pittston Lumber into Hughestown and Duryea, is a good example.

Pittston Police Chief Robert Powers said there is an unwritten rule when it comes to parking on many side-streets: two tires on the sidewalk and two tires on the road.

“If all four tires are up on the sidewalk, there’s a problem,” Powers said. “When that happens, pedestrians or people in wheelchairs and jazzies have to go out on the road to get around a car parked up on the sidewalk. And that’s creating a safety hazard.”

He said several tickets have been issued in the past few months.

“My guys are busy enough that we’re not going out and looking to write parking tickets,” Powers said. “But if we get a complaint, we have to look into it.”

Neighbors complain they don’t have rear access to their properties and don’t have driveways; therefore on-street parking is a necessity. But Powers said that when a car is parked on Parsonage Street with all four tires on the roadway, “cars are going to get clipped and people can get hurt.”

Moskovitz said there is a school near Parsonage Street and children that walk need a clearly defined route.

“We can’t have kids walking in the street,” he said.

He said the city seeks out and purchases narrower fire engines and garbage packers because of the narrow roadways. “It’s always something we need to be mindful of.”