By Phil Stilton
TOMS RIVER—After receiving complaints from a local business owner on Colfax Street and a traffic safety report from the police department, the township council enacted new parking regulations for the downtown through-way that connects Main Street to Highland Parkway to the west. There was one slight problem, the ordinance as approved in January was incorrect.
Originally introduced in December as a two way no parking ban with a two hour parking limit on the north side of the road, Mayor Thomas Kelaher noted that the township has since corrected an error, stating that the two hour parking zone should have been on the south side of the road and the previous ordinance was a typographical mistake and nothing more.
The new ordinance reads that there will be no parking on the north side and a two hour limit on the south side of the road.
“The only reason we were still talking about it was because it was a typographical mistake,” Kelaher said. “The police department said this was needed after getting complaints from school busses who couldn’t navigate the turn onto the road from Main Street when cars were parked on both sides of the road.”
Kelaher also said that downtown employees would also frequently park all day near the Main Street intersection, making it difficult for patients at a nearby medical practice to find parking for their appointments. The ban will be in effect for the entire north side of the road to allow traffic to address the police department’s traffic safety concerns.
The original incorrect ordinance was repealed. It called for a parking prohibition on both sides of Colfax Street for its entire length, and establishing a two hour time limit parking prohibition on the North side of Colfax Street for its entire length.
Kelaher also rejected claims that the ordinance was not necessary and the road would now become a shortcut between Main Street and Highland Parkway. Highland Parkway intersects Main Street just south of Route 37, designed initially to circumvent westbound and Garden State bound traffic away from the downtown area.
As for the mix up in the originally proposed ordinance, “I’m going to have a couple people in the law department join the Boy Scouts so they know the difference between north and south,” Kelaher joked.