GR enforces tow-and-plow plan

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — Some Grand Rapids residents followed directions to not park on some East Hills area streets Tuesday morning so snow plow drivers could do their jobs.

But others did not, and received tickets for blocking traffic. The City has issued more than 11,000 odd-even parking tickets, overall, so far this winter season.

The tow-and-plow plan was in response to complaints from East Hills neighbors who said the roads have become so narrow due to snow that they aren’t safe.

A Rapid bus crashed into a parked car on a narrow Fulton Street near Eastern Avenue SE in Grand Rapids due to too much snow. (Feb. 11, 2014)
A Rapid bus crashed into a parked car on a narrow Fulton Street near Eastern Avenue SE in Grand Rapids due to too much snow. (Feb. 11, 2014)

A crash occurred Tuesday morning on one of those narrow streets, when a Rapid bus clipped a parked car on Fulton Street near Eastern Avenue SE.

Emergency vehicles are also having a difficult time getting down a few streets, the East Hills Council of Neighbors said in a Monday afternoon news release.

Residents are being asked not to park on some East Hills streets Tuesday so plows can get though. (Feb. 10, 2014)
Residents are being asked not to park on some East Hills streets Tuesday so plows can get though. (Feb. 10, 2014)

“The snowbanks are coming out onto the street,” Rachel Lee, the director of the East Hills Council of Neighbors, said. “It’s an extremely dangerous situation going on where cars cannot pass. We can’t see around corners.”

She said it has caused some property damage.

“I’m seeing cars mirrors being taken off. It is dangerous to park your car on the street right now, because you’re basically parking in the driving lane,” Lee said. “If you can’t fit a car down the street, how are you going to fit an emergency vehicle down the street?”

She also said garbage trucks can’t get down the streets. Many residents haven’t had their trash collected.

The city is asking residents not to park on these East Hills area streets between 8 a.m. and 11 a.m. Tuesday.
The city is asking residents not to park on these East Hills area streets between 8 a.m. and 11 a.m. Tuesday.

So City snow plows cleared these roads between 8 a.m. and 11 a.m. Tuesday –

  • Wealthy Street SE between Union and Fuller avenues
  • Diamond Avenue SE between Wealthy and Fulton streets
  • Cherry Street SE between Union and Lake Drive avenues
  • Fairmount Street SE between Eastern and Calkins avenues

Lee passed out flyers Monday to warn residents to move their vehicles.

“People are going to see the plows and people are going to be happy to see the streets cleared,” Lee said.

The City told 24 Hour News 8 that if Tuesday’s effort goes well, it could repeat the process of asking neighbors to keep their vehicles off the streets to plow in other areas of the city.

The neighborhood association said snow will be pushed into sidewalks and maybe driveways. Residents are responsible for clearing their sidewalks and driveways.

Neighborhood residents with questions can call Rachel Lee at 616.901.2562.

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