Steinbach City Council discussed the issue of the large amount of parked cars on Henry Street and Ash Street in Steinbach surrounding Bethesda Hospital.
Council is hoping to come up with a way to fix the problem, and they discussed some possible solutions at the council meeting on Tuesday, May 16th.
The issue was brought up as they received a letter on March 29th from local resident Larry Funk addressing the problem of parking on the streets surrounding Bethesda.
In the letter, Funk asked council to consider installing 2-hour parking signs on Ash Avenue and all the immediate streets surrounding the hospital.
Councillor Michael Zwaagstra says they would want to know that more residents are in favour of this before extending 2-hour parking zones to surrounding streets.
“Normally with that sort of thing, we would only really consider that if there was a neighborhood consensus that this is what they want.”
He says they need to be careful with how they proceed.
“The last thing we want to do is do something reactionary and all of a sudden we've taken away residents’ ability to park in front of their own homes.”
Councillor Jac Siemens notes they are currently constructing a parking lot as they purchased land for that half a year ago, so that will help but the parking issue, but that is yet to be completed.
He brainstorms a couple of ideas to try to fix the issue on Henry Street.
“Is there anything that can be done with Henry Street? Can it be widened? Because it clogs traffic,” he says. “I know we've talked in the past about making it a one-way, that would be a real struggle, but those are also options.”
Mayor Earl Funk says parking on these streets has worsened recently, as there are two huge projects going on in the area.
“I have had people in the area come see me, and they have definitely suggested the challenges they have,” he says. “And that all pre-existed before this project took off, but it's getting worse, the project is multiplying it.”
Larry Funk wrote the letter prior to both construction projects, so there were concerns even before the extra activity.
Mayor Funk says council would like to alleviate things, but feels they don’t have enough information on what the best strategy would be to do so moving forward.
Council agreed to forward this to administration and wait for them to come back with a recommendation.
“And then that way we could make a decision on this and hopefully alleviate some of the parking problems.”
City Manager Troy Warkentin ensures administration will do their best to come up with a solution in a timely matter.