Camanche eyes limited parking due to safety concerns

CAMANCHE — The city of Camanche is looking at limiting parking on Ninth Street due to safety concerns.

Camanche City Administrator Andrew Kida said the intersection of Ninth Street and Seventh Avenue is high traffic in both directions, and drivers frequently disobey the stop sign.

The street is narrow compared to Seventh Avenue, Kida said.

"My concern overall from a parking standpoint is if you limit parking on one side of the street the folks on the other side of the street have nowhere to park where they're parking in front of somebody else's house on the other side of the street," Kida said. "So I don't know if the [police] chief would have some kind of input on that to find some alternative to slowing traffic down there."

Camanche Police Chief Colin Reid said the police department can slow traffic by monitoring traffic more. He said he was concerned that parking on both sides of the street won't leave enough width on the roadway for the Camanche Fire Department to get equipment through in emergencies.

Reid also said that parking in front of another person's residence can create issues. "They feel that's their parking space even though it's open to the public," Reid said. "It can sometimes create some issues in the neighborhood that we have to address and get involved in.

"But I don't have a simple solution," Reid said. "It's difficult parking here, like on Tuesday nights [it's] difficult. Certainly not enough parking."

Councilman Paul Varner said that parking on Ninth Street has always been an issue, citing narrow parts of the street that can be difficult for squad cars to get through if vehicles are parked on the road.

Councilwoman Amber Metzger, who brought up the parking issue on Ninth Street, said that the city needs to look at other streets in town. Ninth Street is not the only street those similar issues, she said.

Fire Chief Dave Schutte said that 16th Avenue, south of Middle Road, has the same problem.

"There's always a full-size van parked right up to the corner," Schutte said. "Someone is going to get into an accident, and when they park on both sides you cannot get through there. I mean it's way too narrow.

"So as we look at these things, I don't know if we could restrict parking in that area on that side, because when you park all the way out to the corner, nosed out there, if there's a car parked on the other side, you can't even get through," Schutte said.

Kida recommended that the city send letters to residents affected by the potential change and invite them to a council meeting when the city will address the issue.