Letter: Plenty of downtown Shelton parking? Letter writer asks 'where?'

Below is a Letter to the Editor from this week's Shelton Herald. If you'd like to have a letter to the editor run next week, email letters to brian.gioiele@hearstmediact.com

Below is a Letter to the Editor from this week's Shelton Herald. If you'd like to have a letter to the editor run next week, email letters to brian.gioiele@hearstmediact.com

Contributed photo

To the Editor:

The other night, my husband Fred and I were eating a delicious dinner at Breeze Cafe downtown and chatted with one of the owners about business.

She mentioned that her customers often tell her that they opt going to a different restaurant because they cannot find a place to park. This is the same complaint that we heard over and over from our patrons when we had our business on Howe Avenue. In fact, it is the biggest complaint that I hear when talking to people about downtown.

The issue about parking is not new and is getting worse because it has never been properly addressed by city hall. The last time I brought up the topic of parking, the current administration falsely suggested that “there is plenty of parking.” My next question is “Where?”

We are witnessing more and more apartment buildings being built with less-than-adequate dedicated parking spots for its tenants. The residents are forced to take a space in a public lot or on a side street which makes it nearly impossible for restaurant or bar patrons to find a place to park because parking spots are already occupied.

While the conversation about adequate parking needs to continue and planning for the future needs to happen, some solutions could be easily implemented. Our city website could have a page listing all the downtown public parking options. Local business owners could print copies and hand them out with takeout menus. Why are all the “ample parking lots” not — at the very least — labeled as public parking?

When it comes to parking downtown, it is painfully apparent that our public servants are not listening to their constituents.

Another suggestion could be to set up a trolley service to and from public parking lots. This would free up traffic flow and add to the ambience of a hopping downtown district. These are just a few ideas that would not take too much time or effort to accomplish but would create such a positive impact to our beloved downtown area.

When a person decides to become a public servant, their job is to listen to their community members and do their best to make changes accordingly. Our current administration is not listening. I sometimes wonder if our current elected officials even frequent our downtown restaurants and bars since they do not acknowledge that we have a parking problem.

Please take the time this election season to ask a lot of questions to the current and running candidates. Please check out the bipartisan group Envision Shelton at envisionshelton.com to get to know them all and when it comes time to vote in November, please vote with your community in mind.

Shelton — What do You Envision?

Michele Bialek

Candidate for Board of Aldermen - 2nd Ward