Residents on Rosewood Street, a block east of N.C. Central University, want the city to do something about student parking on their street.
“They come in droves,” said Linda Brannon.
Parked for several hours at a time, student cars effectively narrow the nominally two-way street to the point vehicles coming from opposite directions cannot get by each other.
“The trash truck, if he’s coming down the street, can’t anybody come down from the other end,” said Troy Poole. “The street is not wide enough for that kind of parking.”
Poole started a petition drive to have the 1300 and 1400 blocks of Rosewood designated and signed as a Controlled Parking Residential Area. That designation limits parking to two hours for anyone who does not live there and have a car decal to show it. Violators would face $50 fines.
A decision on parking limits comes to the City Council at its meeting Monday night.
Fourteen residents signed the petition, and they have the city transportation department’s backing. Ten 10 other residents signed a petition against the designation, contending signs would be unsightly and getting residential decals would be a bother.
Brannon was one of them, but at last week’s council work session she said she had changed her mind.
“I understand the plight of the students,” she said. “I understand my neighbors as well.”
Poole said parking only became a problem on Rosewood after the university opened its new nursing school on Alston Avenue. Councilman Eugene Brown wondered why NCCU hadn’t been required to provide adequate parking, as other builders are in the city.
“It’s not that the parking is not there,” said Wesley Parham, an assistant city transportation director. “It’s the fact it costs $75 a month. ... If it’s free one block over, that becomes an easy way to avoid those costs.”
The city created Controlled Parking Residential Areas in 1991, in response to NCCU neighbors’ complaints that they were often unable to park at their homes because students took up all the available space. Signs now mark areas immediately north, south and west of the campus, but not on the east, across Alston Avenue where Rosewood Street lies.
“I really don’t think it’s right for them to park on Rosewood,” Poole said. “Let these signs go through.”