THORNVILLE – Parking on South West Street will go back to the way it was before a new curb was installed – for now.
Thornville Village Council members decided Sept. 22 that parking would continue to be permitted in front of a new curb on West Street. There was some concern the weight of vehicles and snowplowing may damage the new curb, but neighbors, some of whom only have parking available at the curb, convinced council members to allow parking as usual.
Village Administrator Beth Patrick said parking in front of the curb was suspended as its asphalt structure hardened, but now that the asphalt is set, she said her intention was for the curb to be painted white. However, she needed to know from council if parking in front of the curb would resume. Several residents attended the Sept. 22 meeting to convince council to allow parking to continue.
Council President Mary Renner said the new curb is not backfilled and she is concerned traffic and snowplows would force the village to replace the curb again in a few years. “We’ll have to repair or replace this more frequently,” she said. “It’s still a concern of mine,” but, if people want to see how the new curb holds up to traffic parking in front of it, that would be okay with her. “I just don’t want to see us repairing this every three to five years,” Renner said.
Council member Lynne Snider said she understood Renner’s concern, but if the curb had been fixed right the first time, council wouldn’t be having this conversation. “This has taken a long process to get to this point,” she said.
“Yes, it’s a heated subject,” said resident Cynthia Phillips, “but it’s the only place my mom can park.” She said her mother has no garage and she’s parked where the curb is for 30 years.
“I don’t want to take away parking until it becomes an issue,” said council member Heidi Badders. She said other village streets have more issues than S. West Street, and they do not have restricted parking. “Until it creates a problem, I think we should leave this alone,” Badders said.
Patrick said village engineer GGC designed the curb to divert storm water from a West Street property.
However, residents commented that S. West Street had no water issues until a shut-off valve was replaced. Patrick said the curb was the best option to control the water drainage issues that now exist.
A resident asked if the village could paint the curb with reflective material so the curb is more visible than it would be if just painted white.
Patrick said, while reflective paint is a good idea, the village may not be able to afford it. But, she said HHH Construction Services would be working on crosswalks in towns and she could ask the company if it had some reflective paint it could spare for the curb. In the meantime, Patrick said the curb would be painted white, as planned.
“I’m fine with waiting to see what happens,” Renner said, adding that council may revisit the issue if curb quickly falls apart.
Patrick said parking in front of the curb would resume and it would be painted white soon.