Thursday, November 30, 2017 || By Michael Romain || @maywoodnews
During a Nov. 21 regular meeting, the Maywood Board of Trustees voted unanimously to direct village staff to implement what village officials are calling phase one of a more comprehensive plan to rearrange how residents and commuters utilize parking spaces in the quarter-mile area around the Maywood Metra Station.
The village will remove all of the existing signage on two village-owned lots in the downtown area — one on 5th Ave. and Main St. and the other at 14 N. 5th Ave. (just south of the Stairway of the Stars dance studio).
The village will then install new signage identifying both lots, including signage designating 2-hour parking only and signage designating residential overnight parking. The residential overnight parking, in force from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m., will require a village of Maywood permit.
A map of Maywood downtown area parking lots. | Village of Maywood
According to a Nov. 21 memo prepared by Josh Koonce, the village’s planner, the goal of the new signage “is not to penalize anyone who currently uses the lot. Rather, the purpose of the proposed parking signage on the lots is twofold [sic].”
The first goal, Koonce wrote, is “to provide clarity as to who can use the lots and when. [The second goal is] to allow for movement of vehicles through the business district while placing value on the most easily accessible parking in the area.”
At the Nov. 21 meeting, Koonce said that downtown parking will still be free for the time being, although the village’s ultimate goal is to realize revenue from downtown parking.
“This is a small part of the parking [plan] in the business district,” he said. “I’d call it phase one. A larger plan would involve public involvement and interaction with business owners. But this is something we can do right now to make this area work better.”
Koonce said that a longer term goal for the comprehensive parking plan involves installing metered parking in the area near the Metra station.
“We need to get revenue,” said Trustee Ron Rivers at the Nov. 21 meeting. “We’re about the only municipality along the Metra corridor that doesn’t charge” … I’d like for us to get out of just free parking.”
The board voted on Nov. 21 to direct the village attorney and staff to “prepare the necessary Maywood code amendment ordinance for new parking signage and village-owned lot regulations.” VFP
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