HAMBURG HIGH SCHOOL
Patience. It is a hard word sometimes to listen to when trying to resolve a problem.
Several residents on North Street in the Village of Hamburg near Hamburg High School signed a petition aimed at trying to solve the problem of students parking on their street and presented it to the Hamburg Village Board during its Sept. 4 meeting.
This action ultimately led to the Hamburg School Board setting it as an action item at its Sept. 11meeting.
One resident told the village board the problem has led to some poor behavior by some students, including a claim that while walking in the road, some of them block driveways, refuse to move and use vulgarity.
Mayor Thomas Moses said the village board has been working with the Village of Hamburg Police Department, the Hamburg School District and the Traffic Safety Committee to work out ways to solve the problem.
Moses knows the problem does not include a simple solution, and what could mean a quick fix for one street could lead to problems for residents along other roads.
One of the ways Moses hopes the issue could be solved includes looking at expanding the parking lot at the high school.
According to the mayor, the issues on North Street stem from parking bans that were placed on other nearby streets, including Oliver Place.
The mayorís concern is that if the village placed the ban on North right now, it could lead to similar situations on roads such as Norwood.
Residents along North Street have every right to be upset about what is taking place. It makes things more difficult for people on the street with increases in the numbers of vehicles and students parking and walking.
There is little doubt that village leaders, including Moses, want to fix this problem.
Right now, what needs to be ironed out is a long-term solution to the problem: not a quick fix.
We are at a place and time where high school students also have rights. You can not force them to give up driving themselves to school if they have the means to do so.
If every student either walked or took the bus to school, that would certainly resolve the issue. But it is not going to happen that way so now the question becomes, how does the village and school district fix the parking problem?
Where do you create additional parking? And if there is a space, how many additional spaces do you need?
Another aspect to keep in mind is having a rough estimate of what future enrollment looks like.
Perhaps another solution the board could look at for the future is a lottery system in which only a select number of parking passes are given out to control the problem.
An important first step was taken at the Sept. 4 village board meeting when it was announced that a special committee made up of two North Street residents, along with a member from the police department, school district, village board and traffic safety committee would be formed to take a further look at the issue.
We would like nothing more for the residents of North Street than to see this issue resolved.
At the same time, we also do not want to see fixing a problem fast compound into other headaches for the school district and the village board.
If residents on North can remain patient, we are confident a long-term solution will be found that will satisfy everyone.
The minds are being put into place, and hopefully this will lead to a resolution that will be agreed upon by all sides. This issue needs to be fixed and not parked on the sidelines.