Hudson Council OKs one-way streets downtown

Reconfiguration of portions of Village Way, Park Lane will increase number of parking spaces

PHIL KEREN
Reporter

HUDSON — People heading downtown will soon find 20 more parking spaces available once the sections of two parallel roads are converted into one-way streets.

Council on Aug. 4 unanimously approved making the sections of Village Way and Park Lane between First and Library streets into one-way streets.

Doing this will increase the amount of street parking spaces available downtown, according to city officials.

City spokesperson Jody Roberts said the areas will need to be “re-striped” before the roads can officially become one-way.

“It will be added to the end of our annual striping program and will most likely be happening in September,” said Roberts. “We will make announcements when it becomes one-way.”

Under the plan, Village Way will be one-way westbound and Park Lane will be one-way eastbound. This will allow for narrow traffic lanes that in turn will allow nine parallel parking spaces each on the south side of Village Way and on the north side of Park Lane to be converted to 19 angled spaces for each road. Angled spaces on the other side of both roads will remain the same for a total increase of 20 spaces — 53 to 73 spaces — for both roads.

In addition, the number of handicapped parking spaces will increase from three to four total.

City Council member Skylar Sutton (Ward 3) said on Aug. 4 he recently watched the traffic flow in the area on two separate days. In each case, Sutton observed, “a majority of traffic was… moving in the proposed one-way direction.”

“I hear some of the objections that people raised on the survey, but I think it won’t be as disruptive to your daily life as you may think because I think we’re already doing it subconsciously,” said Sutton.

Council member Chris Foster (Ward 2) said there will always be a “certain percentage” of residents who disagree with proposals such as the one enacting the one-way streets. He noted the city’s survey found that about 67 to 70 percent supported the one-way street configurations. Foster added when he drives in that area, he typically drives on the roads in the same directions that will be implemented in the one-way set-up.

“I think the added parking spaces will be a welcome addition,” said Foster. “… I think it’s probably going to be a good change long-term.”

While noting he favored the changes, Council member Hal DeSaussure (At Large) said he felt the city “might get some blowback” from residents when the one-way streets are implemented. He added if city leaders found the set-up did not work well, the roads could be later returned to their two-way layouts.

Assistant City Manager Thom Sheridan agreed the roads could “easily” be returned to their two-way orientations with “paint striping.”

The parking committee recommended making these changes, and Sheridan noted the committee will continue to meet to discuss other issues.

Reporter Phil Keren can be reached at 330-541-9421, pkeren@recordpub.com, or on Twitter at @keren_phil.