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Parking stalls along Bishop to reopen soon


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POSTED: Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Question: Along Bishop Street there are signs issued by the city Street Usage Section reserving parking meters for construction and other companies that don't ever use them. Signs reserving three parking meters — 1601 to 1603 — for RMI Construction went up in October, but no one has ever used them. The first permit was to have expired on Nov. 21, but when I called the city complaints office, I was told they were going to issue the company another permit. They still haven't used the parking stalls, when a lot of my customers could! Then, in December other signs went up reserving the same stalls for Island Productions. What would have happened if the construction crew showed up on the same days? Why is the city giving out permits not only to companies that don't use them, but seemingly giving out permits that overlap? On Alakea Street, meanwhile, a construction company has been able to reserve parking meters for more than 18 months! Does someone even check to see whether the permits are being used? This is hurting not only my small business, but the businesses of other people as well.

Answer: It's taken us more than two months to find out what's going on along Bishop Street, including word that the parking spaces should be reopened soon for public use.

RMI Construction was issued a permit to occupy three metered spaces — 1631 to 1633 — for its construction vehicles from Oct. 22 until the "present."

Work was expected to be completed "by March," although the signs were still up yesterday.

The city Department of Transportation Services does not have any records of permits for meters 1601 to 1603, said Transportation Director Wayne Yoshioka.

However, RMI has complained that "someone is moving their signs to other parking meters along Bishop Street," he said.

That's the reason meter numbers don't match up with the permit, Yoshioka said. RMI has a suspect in mind but no actual eyewitnesses to verify suspicions.

Regarding the overlapping permits, Yoshioka said prior arrangements were made between RMI and Magic Island Productions to allow the latter to park their vehicles in RMI's permitted stalls.

"Contractors may be using the stalls for loading/unloading, and it may appear that no one is parking there, but in fact they are using the stalls," he said.

Under Section 15-22.8 of the Revised Ordinances of Honolulu ("Charge for enclosure or obstruction of parking meter spaces incidental to construction"), RMI pays $3 per space per day, except on Sundays and public holidays.

Regarding Alakea Street parking, Yoshioka said Valluzzi Poteet was issued a permit to reserve three meters, beginning March 7, 2008, to work on renovations at Harbor Court.

The contractor is renovating four floors and expects to complete the job in June, he said.

The department's Street Usage Section "performs random spot checks on issued permits to ensure the applicant is following the permit requirements," Yoshioka said.

If anyone believes the parking stalls are not being utilized properly, he said to call the department (768-8303) "so we can investigate and take appropriate action."

 

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