A group of college students is out to show just where -- and when -- parking is available in German Village.
Jason Sudy, a partner in Side Street Planning and part-time instructor at Ohio State University, is leading a group of seven graduate students in city and regional planning through a comprehensive review of village streets.
Sudy said the students are going out at various times of the day at different times of the week, counting parking spaces street by street, looking at the positioning of parking signs and restrictions, and trying to determine where spaces are not being used to their full potential.
"I think the interesting thing in German Village is you have a high percentage of residential uses, but you also have retail uses that draw people not just from the city but the whole region" Sudy said.
"We have to find a way to interface those two elements which are sometimes -- not always, but sometimes -- in conflict."
Among the subjects under review are private parking spaces, which are being counted, Sudy said.
Sometimes the owners of those businesses are willing to rent out those parking lots after business hours, he said.
Residents can offer their opinions about the neighborhood parking situation by filling out a survey at germanvillage.com/hows-parking-complete-our-survey.
After two recent attempts to implement new parking restrictions in the village, the study will provide welcome data, said Tim Bibler, chairman of the parking committee.
Last summer, a group of residents tried to get two-hour parking prohibitions on Kossuth Street between Mohawk and Fifth streets.
The request was met with fiery opposition from the business community, which contended the prohibitions would just exacerbate the problem by pushing the patrons into different areas, whose residents would then try to seek restrictions.
Following that, there was a petition calling for the elimination of all public parking 24 hours a day seven days a week on Fifth Street from Jackson to Sycamore streets. However, the city's transportation and pedestrian commission recommended against those restrictions.
The German Village Society board of trustees has asked the city to declare a moratorium on permit-parking requests until the parking committee determines the value of the study.
"There's not a parking issue all the time, there's a parking issue some of the time," Bibler said.