Most people know that it’s not legal to park on a sidewalk, not to mention driving on a sidewalk. On Hertel Avenue, there are wide sidewalks, which is great, but apparently some folks feel that there’s plenty of room for cars, bikes and people. One North Buffalo resident is fed up with cars pulling up to buildings, using the sidewalks as shortcuts for convenience. This is not just a Hertel problem. It’s a problematic issue that occurs all over the city. In the case of Hertel, the street is becoming busier and busier, which means that there are more cars and more strollers. It’s never a good idea to pull a car up onto a sidewalk, unless there’s a construction permit in hand from The City.
From our North Buffalo resident/reader, Monica S:
I noticed you’ve had many articles highlighting the new developments on Hertel, especially ice cream places (Poutine and Cream and Lake Effect). As you can imagine this and the many family-oriented establishments have led to a large number of families with strollers and children on the sidewalks of Hertel. I love seeing Hertel as a walkable corridor of Buffalo as my husband and I frequently walk to dinner, go grocery shopping, get ice cream, get a beer, all without needing to get in a car once. But I’ve also noticed many cars on the sidewalks, parking on the sidewalks, and even driving on the sidewalks – this is a major public safety hazard that the City does not enforce.
Last night, walking home from dinner with my husband and baby, a woman drove onto the sidewalk, nearly missed my husband, and then opened her door into him outside of La Pizza Club. Fortunately she missed our baby in the stroller. The woman was an employee of La Pizza Club, and they “allow” parking on the sidewalk, she genuinely didn’t know that it’s illegal to drive and park on the sidewalk.
Further down Hertel, we encountered a car parked in a driveway, thoroughly blocking the sidewalk forcing us to take the stroller into the street (where there are no bike lanes). When BOSS was still open, at Hertel and Starin, there was usually at least one car parked on the sidewalk. Calls to 311 were ignored because these parking violations are generally happening in the evening.
I’m looking forward to seeing development along Hertel continue (Rolly Pollies and the Lexington Co-op will be opening soon)…
But this remarkable family-oriented development on Hertel is in jeopardy if a child gets struck by a car. Parking on the sidewalk is a serious safety hazard.