The Forest Park police have announced stepped-up enforcement of the three-hour parking limit on Madison Street.
Police Chief Tom Aftanas said the action is in response to complaints to village officials regarding a lack of available parking for those frequenting businesses on Madison.
“It’s a problem,” Aftanas said. “The main violators are the employees” of businesses on Madison, noting, “the vast majority know they’re not supposed to do it.”
He added that he understands it’s “inconvenient” for them to park several blocks away from their places of businesses, “but we want those spaces to be for customers.”
Members of the Forest Park Chamber of Commerce were notified of the stepped-up enforcement effort.
“The Village of Forest Park and the Chamber are sensitive to the fact that, at times, there is somewhat limited parking in the central business district, but if merchants or their employees park in street parking spaces, they are doing their business and the neighboring businesses a great disservice,” the notice said. “There are places for merchants to park, long or short term, so that street parking spaces will be free and available for customer parking.”
Mayor Anthony Calderone confirmed after Monday’s village council meeting that his office had received complaints about a lack of available parking on Madison.
Aftanas and Calderone both pointed out that the village offers free parking on Adams Street from Desplaines to Harlem avenues to businesses and their employees who obtain stickers from the police department.
Aftanas said the stepped-up enforcement began last month and will continue “into the foreseeable future.” He noted a similar effort was conducted last year.
No parking enforcement staff members have been added for the effort, he said. Instead, current resources will be reallocated on Madison.
Aftanas said has not received any complaints from anybody who received a parking ticket.
“What we want is compliance,” he added.