Editor's Note: The article has been updated with several clarifications and changes.
The Maplewood Township Committee (TC) will introduce an ordinance on Tuesday to standardize and in many cases increase parking times in Maplewood Village, according to a proposal released by the township attorney and clarified by Mayor Vic DeLuca.
The ordinance would address what is currently a mixed bag of parking rules throughout downtown, ranging from one-hour parking spaces on Maplewood Avenue to two-, three- and in some cases four-hour parking in parking lots.
The changes would allow for longer parking times at more spaces in town. For instance, the following would increase from 1- to 2-hour parking: Maplewood Avenue, part of Baker Street, the Ricalton Parking Lot, and the lot between the Post Office and Village Coffee.
The Baker Street lot would all be 2-hour parking and the lot behind the strip of stores from Village Coffee to Arturo's would remain at 3 hours.
If the TC approves the resolution, it will take effect sometime in January 2013.
Here is a complete summary of the proposed changes:
- All of Maplewood Avenue from Durand Road to Lenox Place will be 2-hour parking from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. every day except Sunday. (It is currently 1-hour parking.)
- The Ricalton parking lot next to the train station will all be 2 hours.
- The lot between the Post Office and Village Coffee will be 2 hours (it is currently a mix of 1- and 3-hour parking.)
- The lot behind the strip of stores from Village Coffee to Arturo's will remain 3-hour parking.
- Baker Street next to Arturo's will increase from 1-hour to 2-hour parking.
- The rest of Baker Street will remain 1-hour parking.
- The Baker Street lot (behind Words Bookstore) will be 2-hour parking.
- Highland Place would remain 1-hour parking.
- The Highland Place lot will remain 4-hour parking.
The TC will vote to introduce the ordinance at its regular meeting at Town Hall at 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 4. There will be a public hearing and committee members will vote on whether to approve it at the Dec. 18 meeting. A copy of the full meeting agenda can be found here.
Mayor Vic DeLuca discussed the proposed changes at the October meeting. He said the adjustments would make it easier for parking officers to enforce the rules, and would also encourage people to spend more time in town.
The changes were originally proposed by the Maplewood Village Alliance and were based on suggestions that came out of a parking study conducted last year by Maser Consulting, PA.
At the October meeting, DeLuca said the current parking situation was "confusing" in its variations. For instance, parking on Maplewood Avenue is limited to one hour, which DeLuca said is not long enough for most people to have a bite to eat and go shopping. In other cases, such as in the parking lot near the Post Office, parking time limits differ from one space to another.