The Hailey City Council reviewed a draft change to its parking ordinance during a meeting on Nov. 12 to increase visibility for snow-removal equipment while also discussing broader goals of addressing possibly illegal collections of vehicles and trailers.

The proposed text change would prohibit the overnight parking of a motorized or non-motorized vehicle within 6 feet of the edge of asphalt of a city street with or without a curb at any time during the year.

City Attorney Christopher Simms said the draft ordinance was intended to start a conversation, identify issues and see how to address them with an ordinance amendment.

Mayor Fritz Haemmerle had earlier called for a review of the city’s parking ordinance to see if anything could be done to eliminate the “excessive clutter of vehicles around the city.” During the meeting, Haemmerle said reducing the abundance of cars and trailers parked in some areas of the city would be necessary if the city were to move forward with an increase in housing density by allowing more accessory dwelling units.

“Parking will become a bigger problem as the city becomes more dense,” he said.

The City Council was shown numerous photographs of cars and trailers parked on private property and in city rights of way, including trailers that Haemmerle said were “likely” being used for housing.

“This adds to the blight of a neighborhood and needs to be addressed,” he said.

“Most would agree, but not all would agree that this is a problem,” Simms said.

Simms said in an interview that a planner has been contracted by the city to explore parking issues and possible accessory-dwelling-unit expansion. He said there are a “host of competing concerns” regarding the abundance of vehicles in some neighborhoods, including concerns by law enforcement and fire safety personnel.

Simms said some trailers, campers and unlicensed vehicles could be regulated under the city’s nuisance ordinance.

City Councilman Pat Cooley, a Woodside resident, said the photographs shown to the council could illustrate a problem caused by the redevelopment several years ago of Woodside Boulevard, which received sidewalks and bike lanes, pushing parking to side streets.

“Woodside Boulevard was a great success, but this was one of the unintended consequences,” Cooley said.

Email the writer: tevans@mtexpress.com

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