PITTSTON — Council members approved two ordinances at their monthly meeting Wednesday that will restrict parking on Main Street, but they were not met with open arms.
City Administrator Joe Moskovitz said the ordinances were to be approved and submitted to PennDOT so the city can go ahead with Phase IV of the streetscape project which will include improved sidewalks, trees and lighting.
The ordinances were approved 4-1 with Councilman Danny Argo voting no on both, stating he believes the restrictions will inconvenience city residents. He is also not a fan of the $50 illegal parking fine PennDOT calls for.
“I can’t vote for this $50 fine,” he said. “It’s out of order and people don’t have that kind of money.”
The first ordinance restricts parking on portions of the east side of South Main Street from the intersection of Frothingham Street to the intersection of Columbus Avenue and along the west side of South Main from a point near the intersection of Frothingham to the intersection of Kennedy Boulevard.
The second ordinance restricts parking on both sides of South Main from the intersection of Winter Street to the intersection of Plank Street and along the east side of South Main from the intersection of Plank to a point near the intersection of Swallow Street. It also restricts parking along the east side of Plank Street.
Residents voiced their concerns at the meeting, asking where they can park their cars as this is a permanent ordinance.
“What about the people who live on Main Street that have no parking,” one resident asked. “Where are they going to go? Move? Somewhere, they have to park. They can’t walk “
Joe Chacke, director of the Redevelopment Authority, did his best to put some minds at ease.
“The Redevelopment Authority owns a lot right off of Main Street and we’re currently looking to put a residential parking lot on that lot,” he said. “That’s one thing that we’re looking at.”
Councilman Mike Lombardo wished the streetscape project didn’t come with such restrictions.
“None of these come from the city,” he said. “These all come from PennDOT. PennDOT’s requiring us to do all of this to proceed with the project. If it were up to us, everything would stay the same like it has for the last 50 years.”
Reach Jimmy Fisher at 570-704-3972 or on Twitter at @SD_JimmyFisher