For years, Union Street traffic calming has been accomplished by allowing parking on only one side of the street from the Franklin to the Queen Street intersections. However, a parking meter has just been placed in front of the Indigo Hotel on Union Street, which is at the Duke Street intersection. This tacitly condones parking in front of the hotel, which is additive to the previously allowed parking on the other side of the street. Obviously, there was a valid reason for parking on only one side of the street, which I discovered recently.
As I drove southward on Union Street towards Duke Street, I encountered a massive SUV trying to turn northward onto Union Street. Since three vehicles were parked in front of the hotel, space was very limited. The SUV and I had to come to a screeching stop. Meanwhile, other cars were also attempting to get through this intersection. The SUV and I readjusted our routes, and passed each other with only inches to spare.
If this is to be a typical traffic situation at this juncture, I predict that that it will create a major disaster in the not too distant future. A large vehicle such as a tour bus or delivery truck will not be able to turn left at Duke Street onto South Union Street if parking is allowed on both sides of Union Street.
I ask the Alexandria City Council to take immediate action on this issue, lest there be loss of life or limb. I would not take any pleasure whatsoever in saying ”I told you so” if this happens.
Townsend A. “Van” Van Fleet