Parked cars pose issues with Walnut street road diet project

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EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WEHT) – It’s known as a road diet project meaning the number of traffic lanes on Walnut Street has narrowed from four to three. Some residents say parked cars along here are posing a hazard to drivers, especially as the street gets busier with schools in the area, soon, opening back up.

Those who live along Walnut Street say they’re pleased with the overall outcome of the project which involved new pavement, curbs and gutters as well as replacing the north sidewalk with a multi-use trail. But people who live and drive there say they hope city officials address the parked cars issue.

“We really love it. Love the work, but as far as people parking in the street, we feel it’s a little dangerous with cars being a one lane each way and the middle lane being a turn lane. It feels like an accident waiting to happen. We prefer people to not park in the street for safety reasons, but hopefully the city will do something about it,” said Aaron Nolcox.

Nolcox said with nearby schools opening back up starting next month, people should take extra precaution. Others we spoke to said parking on the street is fair game since there are no parking signs.

“I mean there are no signs saying no parking here or no yellow lines. I park there often, so I mean I’ve had no trouble at all,” said Justice Dixon.

“Fresh new drivers, they can be kind of reckless so I feel like when they get out of school they’re in a hurry to get wherever they’re going. Might not be as careful as they should be, so it only adds to the risk of an accident when you have cars parked on both sides of the road on a one lane road,” said Nolcox.

“I think it could be kinda scary, but as long as they’re paying attention and not on their phone and driving like they’re supposed to then everything should be fine,” said Dixon.

“I would hate to see a head-on collision right here in the middle of the street or someone get their car hit. Not to mention people walk down this path constantly. So, if there is an accident a pedestrian could get hurt,” said Nolcox.

The city engineering department said “no parking” signs are forthcoming and that Evansville Police Department will start giving out warnings to those parked there.

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