Dear St. Thomas students and faculty,
I understand that you have issues with your school or place of employment for not having affordable and adequate parking. Instead of taking that issue up with the school, you have sought out parking in the neighborhood, making your problem ours. We have lived here for 15 years and I have never seen it like this.
Here is some of what your problem is costing this neighborhood.
Cars parked in Lot A behind Ireland Hall. (Gina Dolski/TommieMedia)
We have to wait until either really late or weekends to do grocery shopping because we have no place to park close to our homes and unload our groceries. This means on weekends where we could spend time with our kids, we are running big errands. You have made it hard for delivery trucks to pick up or drop things off.
All winter you have left our small kids and the elderly who live in the neighborhood to climb over huge snow mounds because you blocked walks. You also left them to walk long icy paths from alley to house where some have slipped. You parked during snow emergencies where plows had to go around to dig only you out and leave the neighborhood to have to clean up all the snow off the street because the plows could not keep up this year. You have sat in your car with it running to eat your lunch. Thanks for the additional fresh air.
If we have to run to pick up our kids or any short trip (like coffee with a friend) you have taken that joy away because we know that we will not have a place to park when we return.
You have raced down our streets and turned around fast because you are in a hurry (this puts the young kids in danger). You have tossed your cigarette butts on the boulevard, as well as your garbage, which has made its way to our yards and streets. You have spit on our sidewalks.
There is more … a lot more.
Because you will not take the battle on to solve your problem, you have left this whole area seeking permit parking only. We have to take time out and away from our kids to have meetings with the city. We have to pay to park on our streets – the ones that we pay property taxes to fix and maintain.
Thank you for caring about how you walk through the world and who you affect. Above all, thank you for making your smaller problem our bigger problem.
Christine Anderson, St. Thomas neighbor