Update (9:20am): Not long after publishing the below post, Nagy informed My Ballard that SDOT contacted her and offered to install time-limited parking signs in front of her business. The signs will allow for two- to four-hour parking, “to help maintain accessibility for your tenants,” SDOT’s Thomas Fowler told Nagy.
“I will be removing mine when they put theirs up. Win/win!” she says.
Original (Published 8:53am): Erika Nagy owns a property at the corner of NW 85th St and 12th Ave NW. For weeks she’d been frustrated with cars camped out in front, leaving garbage and drug paraphernalia in the parking lot.
“I’ve asked people nicely to move on who have been there for long periods,” Nagy told My Ballard. She said some have agreed, while others refused.
So, three weeks ago she took matters into her own hands and decided to put up the “no parking” signs — purchased online — to discourage the campers. “I just want to ensure tenants can do business,” Nagy said. “As you know parking is limited around Ballard, even more so these days.”
And it worked, she said. The vehicles left, and the parking lot was much cleaner.
But then the letter came from SDOT. The department said her signs were illegal and a “public nuisance”. They warned that if she didn’t take them down, they’d be removing the signs themselves, and sending her the bill.
“I honestly had no idea it would be an issue,” Nagy said. “I thought it was a benign way to maybe give some pause.”
To prove that the signs were illegal, SDOT included in the letter an aerial map that marked out where her property ends and where city property begins — apparently half the parking lot belongs to the city.
Nagy wants to work with SDOT to find a solution — she said she sent an email to the department requesting help to deal with the situation.
My Ballard reached out to SDOT for comment but they haven’t yet responded.