Residents Called Upon for Enforcement of Parking During Oktoberfest
The late addition of resident-only parking on six blocks in Mainstrasse Village during this weekend's Oktoberfest celebration forced the City of Covington staff to react quickly to the call. During Tuesday night's City Commission meeting, Commissioner Shawn Masters proposed the new rule as the meeting was about to end and it passed unanimously. On Wednesday, laminated signs were posted to trees and poles on Willard and Greer Streets from Seventh to Ninth Streets warning festival-goers that the parking spots belong solely to residents. "We've had complaints for years from residents on these streets," Masters said Friday. Masters's proposal Tuesday night prompted the staff to begin work immediately with emails being sent even before the Commission Chambers were emptied. But because of the lateness of the proposal, enforcement will be difficult.
"We didn't have time to contact everybody for hang-tags," said assistant city engineer Mike Yeager. "The enforcement is going to be nearly impossible to do so hopefully the signs serve as a deterrent for now."
Covington Police Chief Spike Jones is banking on assistance from residents. "What we're going to do is respond to the residents if they call in for the situation and we'll deal with it on an as-needed basis because this came across so quickly," Jones said. "I'm optimistic that our residents will connect with us if there's a need and we'll come over and perform services."
For its part, the Mainstrasse Village Association, which produced Oktoberfest and other festivals in the neighborhood, wants visitors to know that there is free parking in the IRS parking lot at Fourth and Johnson Streets. Residential parking is strictly enforced in the adjacent Mutter Gottes neighborhood, but the addition of Greer and Willard is new this year. Masters hopes to make the issue permanent for all future MSVA festivals. He said that after resident-only parking was granted for several streets in the Licking Riverside Historic District most of the calls for a similar program in Mainstrasse Village came from residents on Greer and Willard.
Parking will remain available to visitors on the numbered streets that intersect with Greer and Willard. "We do need to have some parking available for the businesses around there," Masters said.