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Change coming

Published: Thursday, July 3, 2014 11:46 a.m. CDT • Updated: Thursday, July 3, 2014 11:56 a.m. CDT

Change is coming.

Creston City Council voted 6-0 Tuesday to allow parking on the south side of West Townline Street from Sycamore to Elm streets on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. This action will give homeowners in that area additional parking for visitors.

“There is only so many cars you can put in a driveway,” said Gary Lybarger, at-large city councilman. “I can see where it’s a real inconvenience for them when they have company or during events like citywide garage sales.”

This discussion about parking on Townline was initiated last month by Cheryl Somers who contacted the council after citywide garage sales.

Somers — who lives in the 500 block of Townline — said she did not understand why the city put no parking signs along West Townline Street. The council told her the no parking signs were put up after a safety study was done on Townline.

That safety study recommended the city paint white lines on the right sides of Townline 7 feet from the curb to deter drivers from passing on the right.

The city followed that recommendation and also decided to put no parking signs along Townline in August. Both these decisions were made to protect students walking and riding bicycles in the school zone area.

“I just don’t understand why the no parking,” Somers said. “There is parking on most residential streets which are much more narrow (than Townline).”

Somers said prior to the no parking signs being posted her guests occasionally used Townline Street for parking when their driveway was full.

Loyal Winborn, ward 2 city councilman, said he’s always considered Townline to be a through street like Sumner Avenue — not a residential street.

“I’m not in favor of parking on Townline,” Winborn said. “It’s a through street with lots of traffic. I’ve always viewed it as my quick way out of town to Afton.”

Kevin Kruse, Creston public works director, voiced concerns Tuesday that parking on Townline may cause students to stop behind the parked vehicle making them hidden to drivers, possibly causing an accident if the child were to “pop out.”

Winborn did eventually vote in favor of a motion made by Dave Koets — ward 5 councilman — that allowed parking on the south side of West Townline only, which would still allow students to walk and ride bicycles safely on the north side of Townline.

The motion passed 6-0 with Marsha Wilson, ward 4 city councilwoman, absent Tuesday.

Kruse said this parking change will go into effect in about three weeks, giving city workers enough time to take down the current no parking signs and receive and post new signage.

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