Accident awaits


To the Editor:

I went to the selectmen’s meeting on June 12, to talk about the new slant parking, but opted not to continue in the public comment time because very few listen with empathy. Politicians are funny birds: they know all and are best left to themselves.

First, they decided to change to two-hour parking along Sea View Avenue Extension. This, in their opinion, will prohibit employees of the businesses around the harbor from parking there, bottom line. So, if you want to grab dinner and a movie, don’t come to this side of town (unless it’s a slice from Gios, and a 90-minute show, no ice cream stop either). Find your parking elsewhere. Oh, and before I continue, if you’re handicapped and want to park along this road, maybe to use the new “accessible facilities,” not here. Not one handicapped spot along that stretch. Ah, the priorities of some.

I would like to know why the selectmen made the decision to change the parking. This is a residential area. The parking is now similar to Circuit Avenue, a business zoned road?

This has made an already dangerous road in our residential area even more hazardous. There are children in this neighborhood who enjoy coasting down the hill on their bikes in safety, but this has changed.

We all know how difficult it is backing out of a space on Circuit, your view is blocked until you are almost out of the space. Backing out of a space with the new parking on Sea View is even more difficult, due to two-way traffic, the speed of the cars on this road, the pedestrians, cyclists and others in the street. This is a residentially zoned area from Pasque down to the bottom of the hill, I am not aware of another residential neighborhood with parking like this.

This is causing increased traffic congestion on the street, decreased sidewalk width and increased danger to pedestrians and cyclists. This stretch of road is a bottleneck to the harbor. All vehicles must turn around and head back up the hill.

The bottom of the hill is one of the busiest areas, with three ferries, multiple tour buses, and taxis all coming together at several times during the day and evening.

This street is also the starting point and ending point for moped rentals, bicycle rentals, auto rentals, and pedestrians heading up the hill, almost all using the street instead of the sidewalk.

The new parking angle has decreased the sidewalk space, due to the front end of cars and trucks pulled up to the curb and in some instances making wheel chair passage difficult if not impossible.

As cars and trucks back out of these slanted parking spots, their vision is severely hampered, due to the adjacent vehicle. I have witnessed very close calls with cyclists returning to the Island Queen almost getting hit.Drivers rushing to make the boat seem to speed along with disregard, swerving into the opposite lane to avoid backing vehicles who cannot see the cars coming.

People have a tendency to speed up this hill as well. This is an accident waiting to happen, and I will be the first to say I told you so.

Harvey Russell

Oak Bluffs