Parking overnight now legal in downtown Jacksonville

By Ryne Turke on August 28 at 7:20am

Monday’s City Council meeting led to several traffic changes in Jacksonville, several of which involve the downtown area.

Planning and Public Works Committee Chairman Bill Scott says safety concerns were the main reason why aldermen approved the parking change.

“We have a bus that can come around and take people home,” says Scott.

“I think everyone on the council wanted people to get home safely and to encourage them to leave their cars there and that they would be fine overnight.”

Scott notes that before entering Downtown Jacksonville, drivers should be aware of their speed.

“Downtown from Church to Clay and Lafayette to College is 20 mph in that whole area,” says Scott. “Once you enter that area there will be a sign letting you know it is 20 mph and you should obey that sign.”

Alderman Bruce McDaniel noted a problem could arise during snow situations if cars are plowed in. Scott says Mayor Andy Ezard will direct his personnel to plow around cars so that they can do it in a safe manner.

With about ten Jacksonville signs being approved for changes by the council, Scott says drivers should be alert.

“Some signs might be changing from a stop sign to a yield sign and others might be changing from a yield sign to a stop sign,” says Scott.

“Other areas include speed zone changes and no parking on one side of the street. For an example, on Clark Drive there will be no parking on the south side from 8-5 p.m. and that street will  be 20 mph. There will also be some two way stops where there may have been four way stops. There are a multitude of changes coming.”

Those changes are being made by Street Superintendent Les Balinger and the Jacksonville Street Department. Scott says the biggest change has been the addition of a stop sign to the Brown and Lafayette intersection. Also, a pedestrian cross walk is scheduled to be added to the Lincoln and Mound intersection.

A traffic change at Kentucky and Mauvaisterre- replacing yield signs with stop signs- was discussed by council members but has not been decided upon yet.