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Within the past few weeks, a perpendicular, or “head-in,” parking project has been completed in the 4300 block of Kansas Street, north of El Cajon Boulevard.

The project was initiated by the Mid City Community Parking District and proposed by Gary Weber and Steve Aldana of the Boulevard Business Improvement Association. They and their consultant, Allan Hoffman, worked to determine a suitable location for the project.

Perpendicular parking is a new approach to accommodate more cars than parallel and diagonal parking allow. Dionné Carlson, chair of the Public Facilities Subcommittee (of the North Park Planning Committee), believes that the long-term plan is to institute this type of parking in other locations in the city where the street width allows.

The project is touted as a cost-effective way to maximize parking and reputedly useful near business districts in neighborhoods heavily populated with apartments. The 4300 block of Kansas Street met these criteria.

So far, resident feedback has been generally positive — parking spaces are easily found, and the speed of through-traffic has slowed due to the narrowed street. However, residents have identified two potential concerns: headlights shining into residential windows; and storm water run-off blocked by the perpendicular vehicle wheels, which could cause water to flow over the curb and make access to cars difficult.

The pilot project will be evaluated by the North Park Planning Committee after six months, when the rainy season ends next year. Residents will respond with their experiences. If problems exist, the North Park Planning Committee will correct or mitigate them.

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