Council Will Request A Meeting With Traffic Commission

The Everett City Council is requesting a meeting with the Traffic Commission after discussing a motion by Council President Michael Marchese about the pros and cons of changing the city’s residential parking program from five to seven days a week.

During Monday’s Legislative Affairs Sub-committee meeting, Marchese opened the discussion by stating there have been “issues related to the overbuilding in the City of Everett and the lack of parking spaces.”

Marchese specifically mentioned the new 600 Apartments building located at 600 Broadway.

“I read something the other day regarding the 600 [Apartments], that they’re offering off-street parking, and I thought there was supposed to be a shutoff on that address,” said Marchese. “If we’re going to go forth like that, we have to strengthen the residential parking program. We’re going to have to find a way to get the cars off the street, because people are going to come here and park and visit people, and it’s going to be tough for the fulltime residents [to find parking spaces].”

Marchese also offered a proposal about building designated parking lots for residents before asking Clerk of Committees John Burley whom the Council should invite to a meeting. Burley suggested Everett Police Sgt. Joe Gaff and city official Chad Luongo for a conference.

Ward 3 Councillor Darren Costa said he would certainly welcome a meeting with the Traffic Commission. “There’s a piece [on the agenda] for the next Traffic Commission meeting that I do want to speak about,” said Costa, adding that any change in parking regulations would involve all the traffic signs and would take a comprehensive, citywide plan with different time limits for parking.

“The fact that we’re adding a city within a city in [residential] units means we need a comprehensive plan,” said Costa. “And do we have the people on staff to enforce the rules that we are applying when we are developing these extra units?”

Councilor-at-Large John Hanlon said he’s fortunate to have a driveway for one vehicle, “but after 11 o’clock there is no parking anywhere on Main Street.”

Councilor-at-Large Stephanie Smith suggested researching the parking programs in surrounding communities and then formulating a plan of action.

“We have to do it right,” said Smith. “It’s time to re-look at [parking regulations] – Everett’s changing. We have to reassess Everett as a city in totality. We’re going to have hire more enforcement to get this done, and I think we have to think about the cost impacts of this.”

Burley said the City Council can make recommendations about a new parking program, but “it’s the Traffic Commission that’s fully empowered to do this. We can recommend, but we do not have the authority to do some of the things that we’re mentioned in here tonight.”

The Council voted to schedule a meeting with the Traffic Commission after conducting its own research on residential parking programs and determining what plan would work most beneficially for the City of Everett and its residents.

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