More Parking in Harwich Port?

HARWICHAn ad hoc parking committee in Harwich recently presented recommendations to selectmen for expanding parking in Harwich Port.

Committee Chairman Alexander Donoghue said the committee is recommending the use of the former fire station property on Bank Street for parking for employees of Harwich Port businesses. He also recommended the town provide a shuttle for the employees using the lot.

Donoghue says the location is the most viable.

“As a quick estimate there appears to be about 35 parking spaces at the property,” he said.

There are currently boats on the property. Donoghue said the harbormaster has indicated that they would soon be in the water and the lot would be open.

The recommendations also called for instituting a two-hour limit at the Schoolhouse Road parking lot to encourage Harwich Port employees to use the proposed Bank Street lot. The limit would also prevent beachgoers from using the lot all day.

There would also be separate parking set aside at the Bank Street lot for visitors using the nearby conservation area.

Donoghue said the lot should also be lined to alleviate confusion and parking hazards.

Bank Street residents expressed concerns for increased traffic and speeding that could result from using the property for parking.

Resident Robert Piantedosi said the committee was unbalanced to favor businesses.

“We need a balanced conversation about how we are going to do this,” he said.

Piantedosi said Bank Street residents were not allowed to participate on the committee and that there were no public notifications about meetings.

“Obviously a lot of work was done and I appreciate much of that effort, but I think it was clearly unbalanced,” Piantedosi said.

Resident Stan Moody said the discussion needs to be opened up with residents.

“There are a lot of people here who are concerned about it and I think they should be brought into the conversation,” Moody said.

I love Harwich Port. It’s one of the few places on Cape where you can walk around to a plethora of shops and restaurants in a small radius…if you can find parking. As many know, when the population on Cape Cod increases 6-10x times what it’s designed for, it’s difficult to accomodate such an influx. Every town on Cape has this problem. There are few municipal lots that are close to points of interests. Harwich Port, Main St. Hyannis, and Orleans have some small satellite lots that come to mind, but parking is definitely a major issue in the Summertime. Have any horror stories or solutions? Share them below in the comments.