I am writing this letter on behalf of myself, my neighbors and friends who reside near downtown Glendale.

Living near downtown Glendale has become a nightmare, and every day is a struggle to get home!

As most readers may be aware, not all apartment buildings have their own parking structures. Some residents are required to park their cars on the street.

Enter nonresidents, who don’t think twice about whether they are occupying a resident’s spot. These are people who are either patrons of YMCA, 24-Hour Fitness clubs, Alex Theatre or are out for a night on the town. Added to the already problematic situation are the employees of various restaurants, who drive to nearby residential streets and park their cars leisurely until the wee hours of the morning!

This situation is even more dreadful and unbearable around Christmas, when people park on the streets to avoid the Glendale Galleria and Americana at Brand parking structures and the chaos created by shoppers!

Everyone residing in Glendale is aware that there are no “free” parking spaces available except residential streets. What are residents to do? This parking situation has become a major predicament for me, all my neighbors and many others I know in the area who are forced to park on the streets.

City parking structures offer 90 minutes of free parking, but besides that, the rest cost money. In order to avoid parking fees, people take the liberty of parking on residential streets with no consideration whatsoever. They occupy the available spaces lavishly and selfishly, as if they are parking in their own driveways, at times not even considering pulling forward or backing up a little bit to leave enough space for another person to use an adjoining space.

To nonresidents, ponder this: When you are driving around the blocks anticipating an available parking spot after 5 p.m., take into consideration the person who is trying to get home after a long day’s work! If you have the option of parking in a parking structure or at a metered spot, please do so. You are out for your own leisure while others are trying to get home.

Are there any solutions to this chaotic battle? Yes. Option 1: Metered parking spaces must be free after 6 p.m. and on Sundays (like they used to be). Option 2: Downtown area residential streets should have the “Permit Parking Only” restriction in place between 6 p.m. and 7 a.m. daily, no exceptions! Option 3: Businesses could encourage their patrons to use parking structures by offering longer than 90 minutes of free parking with validation.

Also, most, if not all, parking structures (fortunately) have predetermined spaces, as well as sections for compact cars, handicapped parking, etc. Why do drivers of large automobiles (SUVs, Hummers, trucks, vans) feel they can or have the right to occupy designated spaces for compact cars? Is it really difficult to go to a different level and park in the proper space allotted for larger autos? How about parking outside the set area or occupying two parking spaces?

Possible solution: Should the managers of these structures be given the authority to fine people who disobey these simple rules, which are common knowledge?

Any and all suggestions and ideas are encouraged and welcomed.

 ARMINEH HOVANESIAN is a Glendale resident.

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