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Parking issues plague Potomac Yard, city looks to create residential parking district

Dave Dolton moved to Potomac Yard last month, and with his new garage full of unpacked boxes has been parking on the street. One of his neighbors wasn’t too happy about his extended street parking, and left a strongly worded note on his windshield.

“Please don’t park and take up space on a street where you don’t live,” the note says. “Alexandria has parking rules — and your vehicle has been reported. Thank you.”

Dolton said that the note is hilarious.

“No idea which neighbor left the note,” Dolton wrote to ALXnow. “We moved here in early March, and I still can’t fit my car into our garage, due to all the boxes. We live in Potomac Yard, and while there are no posted signs, there is a rumor of not leaving your car here (if you don’t live here) for longer than 72 hours.”

In fact, it turns out that Potomac Yard is not in a residential permit parking district, and only general parking rules apply, such as no commercial vehicles can park in a residential area, no parking within 15 feet of a fire hydrant and the city’s 72-hour rule. There are few parking signs throughout Potomac Yard along and around Main Line Boulevard, which neighborhood residents say leads to rampant fraudulent parkers.

“It happens all the time,” said a Potomac Yard resident. “They come park here and they take an Uber and go to Reagan National Airport for a trip and leave their car parked here and nothing happens. Sometimes they will just park and take an Uber to the Metro. Imagine how it’s going to look at this new Potomac Yard Metro station they’re building.”

Alexandria does not enforce parking on private streets, according to the city. Accordingly, many of the streets on the garage side of homes are private streets owned by the Potomac Yard Homeowners Association.

“Transportation & Environmental Services staff are working with the Potomac Yard HOA to consider creating a residential permit parking district,” Alexandria Senior Communications Officer Andrea Jones Blackford told ALXnow. “This will be a public process that involves petitioning the residents and going to the Traffic and Parking Board and City Council for approval if there is neighborhood support.”

Blackford said that there are no current plans to install new signs and that the City does not install parking signs on private property.

Photo via Dave Dolton/Twitter

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