Mercer Island City Council to discuss 'no parking' ordinance on Mercer Ways

A public hearing concerning a City ordinance to implement additional parking restriction on sections of the Mercer Ways will be held at the next City Council meeting on Tuesday, February 21.

A first reading of the proposed ordinance is planned for this meeting, with a second reading and possible adoption planned for the March 5 meeting.

In 2002, the Mercer Island City Council established the Roadside Shoulder Development Program to provide paved shoulders to increase safety for pedestrian and bicyclists along the Mercer Ways. By the end of 2011, the City had paved approximately seven miles of roadside shoulders.

Last November, it became apparent that cars parked on the new shoulders were forcing pedestrians and cyclists using the shoulders onto the main roadway. As a result, the City Council decided to move to implement additional parking restrictions on the Mercer Ways.

The ordinance proposes the City will install "No Parking on Pavement Dawn to Dusk" signs along East Mercer Way, West Mercer Way, and portions of North Mercer Way where improved, paved shoulders have been built. The restrictions will prohibit anyone from parking vehicles on the paved shoulders during daylight hours. Exceptions will be made for snow and ice, special events, and construction activities.

Several sections along the Mercer Ways are already signed for "No Parking Anytime." These existing restrictions are expected to remain in place. A section along West Mercer Way near West Mercer Elementary is currently signed for variable restricted hours on school days. This restriction would change to "No Parking on Pavement."

The new parking restrictions would go into effect 30 days after approved by the City Council and notification of the approval is given to the public. The Police Department will allow a two-week grace period for residents to adjust to the parking restriction. Enforcement of new parking restrictions would begin May 1.

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