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April 7, 2014

City parking regulations splits citizen opinions

CHICKASHA —

Despite some citizen complaints, Chickasha City Manager Stewart Fairburn said he has seen a lessening of cars parking on lawns due the city's residential parking regulations. 

"As we see success there are less people parking in the grass," Fairburn said. 

City ordinances require residents to park on a paved driveway, on the street or in some cases, an alley if necessary. New gravel driveways are not permitted, but those with existing gravel structures may park in such driveways as long as they are kept up to code. 

Attracting commerce is the key reason the city is making these parking efforts, according to Fairburn. 

"All of this refers to how do we and others perceive our community," he said. "Everything relates back to economic development. If we are a community that looks bad, then it looks like the people living here are not investing in their own community." 

Although the city's efforts may be business minded, many have complained the parking ordinances are too far reaching. 

"It's ridiculous! While I am all for the beautification of chickasha, there are so (sic) elderly that can not physically or financially afford to pave a driveway. Then when they park in the road they take a chance of their vehicles being hit by people not paying attention or they get a ticket for improper parking- not to mention the roads are already cluttered enough with trash cans," Kiesha Bagget wrote on The Express-Star's Facebook in response to a question about the city parking ordinance.

Christian Gorrell Christopher Thompson wrote the parking decision should be left to the home owner. 

"If the owner doesn't want the people renting the house to park in the yard that's the property owners decision," she said. "But as a home owner myself I think if I damage my grass or my yard.... its my yard. Very tempted to kill all the grass in my front yard just because this stupid rule angers me."

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