Glencoe, News

Glencoe considers new parking study as complaints keep coming in

The Village of Glencoe is looking to conduct a parking study to solve concerns about its downtown commercial district.

The Village has coordinated with the Village of Winnetka to begin a streetscape planning effort for the Hubbard Woods District. During the Village Board’s Committee of the Whole meeting on June 20, Development Services Director Taylor Baxter used the ongoing streetscape planning as a platform to discuss the parking issues in the downtown area.

Glencoe last conducted a parking study in 2015. Baxter emphasized that the usage of downtown has changed significantly within the past 10 years, and since the beginning of the pandemic, curbside pickup and deliveries, as well as outdoor dining, have surged. 

The village has attempted to balance these changes by implementing curbside pickup spots and 15-minute limits in certain areas. 

Additionally, the village transitioned the commuter lot west of the Metra tracks, south of Park Avenue, to three-hour parking. While the transition was made on June 1, trustees noted that they haven’t seen many residents take advantage of the added spaces, supposing a lack of awareness and safety concerns when crossing Green Bay Road played a role.

“We haven’t been terribly successful in convincing people to think outside of the box they understand from a parking standpoint,” Village Manager Philip Kiraly said. “Green Bay Road acts like the Nile River. It’s seen as this chasm that you can’t get across.”

With that in mind, the Village Board continues to receive complaints from residents about a lack of parking in the heart of the commercial district.

Baxter and other trustees believe that a new parking study could assess what policies are working and what needs to be done to alleviate this stress in the downtown area. 

Kiraly sees that the intention behind this study should be to reevaluate parking based on usage patterns, not just build more parking. From his perspective, immediate issues can be addressed through policy, and redevelopment is something to look at years down the line.

The board is looking to include this parking study within the ongoing streetscape planning, as many trustees believe the two go in concert together. The board of trustees will continue to discuss the downtown parking issue and what this parking study should accomplish. 

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