Posts Tagged ‘Brighton’

Resident only parking — it’s not over yet

Monday, June 8th, 2009

(Follow the whole story here.)

I found this photocopy in my mailbox yesterday after returning from a two-day trip:

Parking Letter

I’ve redacted identifying information both because I prefer not to publish other people’s names, identifying information and private correspondence without their consent, and because I don’t want this to turn into a personal battle among residents on our block.

I will have more to say about this soon; it would be premature for me to discuss here how I intend to respond to this.  In the meantime, I thought people might find it interesting.

Resident-only parking restriction removed!

Friday, June 5th, 2009

As I previously reported, Allston/Brighton resident-only parking signs were posted on my block on May 15, without any prior consultation with or notice to the homeowners on the block.

The day I wrote to the city about this, I received a response from someone in the Transportation Department claiming that it would be looked into.  When I hadn’t heard anything back from him, I escalated on June 3 by sending email to Transportation Commissioner Thomas Tinlin.

I received a response from Commissioner Tinlin the next day.  He explained that the man who had responded to me on May 15 was seriously ill and had been in the hospital for several weeks.  He also assured me that he would look into the matter immediately.

Today, less than 48 hours after I first emailed Commissioner Tinlin, I received the following response:

Mr. Kamens,

Upon research it appears that a fairly new traffic investigator assigned to the ___ Street RPP program made an assumption that the entire length of ___ Street was to be Resident Parking. This, as you know was not the case.

In his attempt to be proactive he made this mistake with the best of intentions. I have spoken to him about the proper process which must be followed and he should contact a supervisor if any confusion in the field occurs again.

Having said all this the signs in question will be taken down beginning today. I do apologize for the confusion and inconvenience this has caused you and your neighbors.

Sincerely,

Tom Tinlin

There was a Transportation Department crew on our street removing the signs about ten minutes after this message was sent.

Very nicely handled.

Also, on the off chance that someone else encounters a similar situation in the future, I should mention the following for the record.  In his email to me on June 4, Mr. Tinlin summarized the process that’s supposed to be followed before a parking restriction is put into place: “Our policy as it relates to the establishment of a Resident Parking program is two fold. 1. A neighborhood petition circulated by the folks requesting which is then followed up by a series of community meetings, and 2. A request from the local elected officials.”

City of Boston converts our block to resident only parking without our knowledge, desire or consent

Friday, May 15th, 2009

May 15, 2009

Dear Mayor Menino,

I have lived at __ ___ Street in Brighton for almost twelve years.

I came out of my house this morning and found a BTD employee posting “resident parking only” signs on our block.

I do not understand why the residents of our block were not consulted about whether there was a need or desire for resident-only parking before converting our street.

I do not understand why we were not notified that this change was going to take place.

I do not understand why this change was made. There was no need. It is rarely impossible to find a parking space on our block, or at worst on the adjoining block, even on street-cleaning days when we can only park on one side of the street.

We have frequent visitors; we want them to be able to park near our house.

The Belgian Honorary Consul to the city of Boston lives two houses down from us and has regular visitors for consulate business. I doubt they will appreciate being unable to park near his house.

I called your constituent services hotline about this, and they transferred me to the public works department, which then tried to transfer me to the transportation department, whose line was busy. I should not have been transferred in the first place; I want your office to solve this problem, not brush me off onto someone else. And as for the transportation department’s telephone line being busy, have you folks ever heard of voicemail? Do you think I have time to keep calling the transportation department’s number all day until I just happen to get through?

Please take down these signs and give the residents of the street the opportunity to weigh in on whether they are needed before putting them back up.

Thank you,

Jonathan Kamens