Pittsburgh City Councilwoman Approaches Parking from a Safety Angle

Jul 29, 2013

District 2 Councilwoman Theresa Kail-Smith said she might propose forming a task force to tackle city parking issues from a safety perspective. 

In some neighborhoods, like Mount Washington, Smith said parked cars can impede public safety vehicles such as ambulances or fire trucks.

“We had some issues in my district and other districts where public safety vehicles could not access roads in the time frame in which they would like to have access, and so we want to address parking as it relates to public safety,” Smith said. 

The councilwoman said the problem can't be blamed solely on old, narrow streets, and before the issue turns into a matter of life or death, there are certain things the city can do to be proactive. 

She said there are opportunities for additional parking in neighborhoods to offset some of the on-street parking and added implementing permit parking could help as well. Smith also suggested issuing a certain number of parking permits for one rental property or development.

Smith said this is not just an issue for her district; it's a city-wide concern. She said the task force should include people who are familiar with Pittsburgh’s parking issues.

“Someone from the police department, someone from the parking authority, (and/or) someone from the other official offices,” she said.

The post-agenda meeting on the matter is on Tuesday at 1 p.m. in City Council chambers and is open to the public.