Command, residents cooperate on housing parking
Things are about to change for on-post housing residents of Fort Gordon as unauthorized parking in select residential neighborhoods on the installation will result in possible citations from law enforcement.
Courtney Spruiel, mayor for Gordon Terrace, explained how a lack of designated parking came to her attention.
“A few residents of Ironwood Court came to me and said that people from another street were parking in their parking spots,” she said. “By doing this they were taking away two parking spots from the Ironwood Court residents. They were also parking on the street instead of in designated parking spots and blocking the fire lane.”
What Spruiel did next was take her concerns about parking to the chain of command.
“I immediately brought it up at the mayor’s meeting to the garrison command team and we went through it to find a solution about the need for more parking,” said Spruiel. “The next step was to see if the cars that were parking in the assigned spaces were authorized to be there. There is no assigned parking in Gordon Terrace and we are moving toward changing to assigned parking for the majority of Gordon Terrace.”
Spruiel said the need for assigned parking would make things easier for residents.
“Initially we sent out letters to residents of Ironwood Court and Garcia Street asking residents to be neighborly and to park in their select area,” said Spruiel.
However the letters did not resolve the problem. Her next step was to get the garrison command team and the provost marshal involved.
“Things started moving once the PMO and garrison command team got involved,” she said. “We started making estimated timelines for when assigned parking will take effect.”
According to Lt. Roger Carver, traffic management collision investigators supervisor, Fort Gordon Law Enforcement Center, older housing communities on the installation were built to a different standard than the newer areas like new Olive Terrace and Lakeview.
“When new Olive Terrace and Lakeview terrace have sufficient parking for the residents, but the older housing communities (like Gordon Terrace) … older housing communities were built to an older standard which required just one parking space,” said Carver.
Though Olive Terrace and Lakeview are newer in terms of construction they too have their parking challenges. Housing residents having been parking on both sides of the street and creating a driving challenge for emergency vehicles. This means no more parking on both sides of the street in these areas. Signs that read ‘no parking’ are scheduled to be installed soon.
Until all of the no parking signs have been placed violators will receive a warning from law enforcement officials. Once the signs are in place warnings will give way to citations.
“It’s a safety concern having vehicles parked in the street because children can walk out and emergency vehicles cannot always get through,” said Carver. “We don’t want to have residents at risk. The more people we get to park in driveways and in designated parking spaces the better we will be on the safety side of the house,” he said.
“Older housing areas like Gordon Terrace will be assessed for the possibility of installing new parking spaces,” said Carver.
“ We’re – the traffic section – going to enforce the new parking policy,” said Carver. “We ask the community to cooperate with us as we enforce this new policy.”
The overall goal is to have assigned parking for Gordon Terrace within the next six months but hopefully sooner for residents of Ironwood Court.
“ Safety is definitely one of the main reasons why we’re moving toward this,” said Spruiel. “When the ambulance and fire truck come through our neighborhood it’s important that they be able get to an emergency as soon as possible. We are also concerned about child safety. We don’t want kids playing in between parked cars.”
“We want residents to feel comfortable where they live and to be able to park at a reasonable distance from their home,” said Spruiel.