The four-year effort by merchants and property owners along Automobile Alley to establish angled parking spaces won a key approval Friday from the Oklahoma City Traffic and Transportation Commission.
A date for actually painting the spots, resulting in an increase of up to 24 spaces along Broadway between NW 5 and NW 10, however, remains unknown. The street carries an average of 12,000 vehicles a day.
Oklahoma City Traffic Engineer Stuart Chai said that the switch from parallel to angled parking requires an ordinance change that will next be considered in February by the Oklahoma City Council. Even with council approval, final design work must be completed, and because the project is funded by the Automobile Alley Association, he is unsure who will do the work.
Public Works Director Eric Wenger said the wait won't be much longer.
“We will make this happen this spring,” Wenger said. “We will expedite the work as soon as we get the work done.”
The wait for the angled parking spaces rankled some of its supporters, including former association chairman Anthony McDermid, who noted the group first asked the city for the spaces in 2009.
“We have provided analysis almost to the point of paralysis,” McDermid told the traffic commission. “I ask you to consider we have invested a tremendous amount of analysis. This is a changing neighborhood, this is a changing city.”
About a dozen shops and restaurants have opened along Broadway over the past few years, and have repeatedly complained about the five-lane width of the street and growing scarcity of parking.