Residents on East Third and East Fourth avenues and nearby side streets are looking for a solution to ease parking congestion.
To address the ongoing problem, Boulevard Neighborhood Association Inc. has requested that Durango City Council look into a permitted parking program.
A board member of the association, Mike Todt, said that after he leaves his house in the morning, he can’t find reasonable parking until around 7 p.m.
“I would love to be able to park in front of my house ... but I’ll settle for my block,” he said.
The city will host a public meeting Thursday to present the basics of a possible program and get feedback from the community that will be presented to city councilors.
“I really just want to gather information from the public and the residents,” said Amber Blake, director of the city’s Transportation and Sustainability Department.
Any permitted parking program would have to go through a public ordinance process with several more opportunities for public comment.
The permit area likely would be from 14th Street to Fourth Street and from the alley between Second and Third avenues to the alley between Fourth and Fifth avenues.
“The program would be basically mandatory. ... Every property would have to participate,” Blake said.
Both residents and members of the public would have to purchase permits to park in the neighborhood. Residents likely could purchase passes that would allow them to park at any time. Other members of the public likely would be able to purchase passes that would allow them to park in the neighborhood during the day.
Weekends likely would remain free, and it would not impact church parking, she said.
No one, including residents, could purchase a pass for a specific space because that is not legal, Blake said.
Before implementing a program, the city needs to make sure that parking permits could cover all the costs of the program, including enforcement, she said.
In addition, officials want to make sure the program could be replicated in other Durango neighborhoods.
Currently, the association is surveying the neighborhood to make sure residents would support the program. So far, it has found broad support, Todt said.
“We have all agreed we would pay something for the permit,” he said.
Jonni Greiner, the owner of Yarn Durango, 755 East Second Ave., expressed some skepticism about a permitting program, but she would like to see a comprehensive parking plan that would allow for growth.
“We wish we had a whole lot more parking for business,” she said.
A parking garage could help fill that need, she said.
Jordan Brenner, who parked on East Third Avenue on Thursday, sought out the free space to avoid the meters and was concerned about paying for a permit.
“It would be a little bit upsetting,” he said.
The public meeting to gather feedback from all members of the public will be held at 5 p.m. Thursday at the Carnegie building, on the corner of East Second Avenue and 12th Street.
The City Council is scheduled to discuss it April 14. The council’s meeting will not be open for public comment.