Lack of parking concerns Northbrook neighborhood
Andy Cooper, and many of the residents of her townhome development, are upset about the the village's plans to reduce the amount of parking available on Greenwood, near their homes. | Brian O'Mahoney~for Sun-Times Media
Updated: February 19, 2013 12:04PM
NORTHBROOK — When the village cut parking space Jan. 8 on Greenwood Road near Dundee Road, the action was taken to allow emergency vehicles to turn into Greenwood more safely.
But the residents of the 13-unit Oxford Court Townhome development at the northwest corner of Greenwood and Dundee say that it simply makes a long-time parking problem even worse.
Village staff recommended extending the current “No Parking” restrictions another 250 feet north on the west side of Greenwood Road, after being contacted by two people who were concerned about the safety issue, said Village Engineer Paul Kendzior.
The west side of the street – on which the town houses stand – was chosen, because that is where the fire hydrants are located, typically the determining factor for the decision, he added. The single family and townhouse neighborhood was notified in September of this proposed extension of ‘No Parking’ restrictions and asked to provide comments by Oct. 12, Kendzior said.
“The comments received from the residents fronting Greenwood Road were all in support of the extension. Some even favored restricting parking on both sides, which was not recommended by staff,” he added.
Karyn Abrams and Stewart Engeman who have lived at 592 Greenwood 25 years applauded the village’s decision. They said they have constantly worried about large emergency vehicles making their way down the street when vehicles are parked on both sides.
“Pulling out of the driveway can feel like threading a needle as often cars are parked on the east and west side just feet from our driveway,” Diane Weintraub of 748 Greenwood stated.
Another neighbor, Glenn Weintraub, said: “This entire parking problem is caused by the multi-family residences at the end of the street. This is an important criteria to remember when the vacant lot that is for sale requests a zoning variance to gain more density.”
However, the residents of the townhouse development – who have two-car garages, but no driveways, and only two visitor spaces for the entire complex – were not at all happy about the extension of the ‘No Parking’ restrictions, specially on their side of Greenwood.
Andy Cooper, the spokeswoman for Oxford Court who has been a resident for 29 years, strongly objected to the decrease in on-the-street parking space.
“The parking situation for our complex has always been an issue for us. More than 25 years ago we petitioned the village to put in guest parking on either side of the driveway, but were flatly turned down. Therefore, the street is the only alternative we have,” Cooper said. “ What you think will solve one problem will only create another.”
Cooper also noted that the village should never have approved so little visitor parking when the developer presented the plans for the Oxford units.
Raisa Dubossarskay, who lives at 788 Greenwood, said the village is creating a safety issue and a hardship for the elderly, as well as for those with small children, who now will have to cross Greenwood to reach the townhouses.
Village officials said they will continue to monitor the parking situation and would consider other options if the problems persist.
Katherine Au, a townhouse resident at 770 Greenwood, suggested that instead of taking so much parking away from the townhouse residents, a “No Parking” policy be established for a given distance from the driveways on the other side of the street. She also suggested that the village buy the undeveloped lot that is for sale and create a small parking lot on the northeast corner of Dundee and Greenwood.
Stephan Lukashok, a 13-year resident of 778 Greenwood, agreed that a parking lot at that site would make a lot of sense.
“On Friday and Saturday nights when people on both sides of the street have a party, there can be 15 to 20 more cars on the street.”