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Streetside Parking Issues at Softball Complex

Township passes ordinance banning parking along and on shoulder of portions of North Bay

With about 200 parking spots in the new softball complex, concerns with overflow parking along North Bay Avenue has led the council to consider an ordinance prohibiting parking along portions of the roadway.

The Township Council passed the ordinance tonight, prohibiting parking on stretches of North Bay Avenue in both directions near the softball complex.

Concerns came in from residents as well as police, who foresaw the potential for vehicles to use the grass and shoulder along North Bay Avenue for parking during tournament days.

The new law calls for no parking from about 250 feet in each direction from Whitty and North Bay, eastbound side, as well as 200 feet in each direction from Greenleaf Court and North Bay. On the westbound side of North Bay, parking would be prohibited from Priscilla Court to 3,350 feet south.

The ordinance passed last night allows for some parking on the west, or field side, of the road for an additional 50 spaces on the shoulder. This will increase the total from 200 spots, said Township Engineer Robert Chankalian.

At previous council meetings discussion ensued about resident and police public safety concerns about the road near the complex, that overflow might find the park visitors parking dangerously along North Bay Avenue or down residential side streets.

Chankalian said the ordinance sprang from a tournament issue, where about 12 teams converged on the complex at the same time, instead of scattered throughout the day, which quickly created a parking issue.

For those types of events, tournament organizers will be required to hire police and use other lots and bus people in, according to recently passed tournament rules.

Chankalian said the current amount of parking should be ample for everyday and regular weekend use, but he's looking to create additional parking that could add another 50 spots to the complex, near one of the fields.

"We are looking at an area inside the field where we can park an extra 50 cars. This will be in a grass area where there is no irrigation to damage," he said.

Chankalian said the existing parking is meeting demand, with some to spare.

"There's 50 spaces per field out there. That's a lot. That's way more than any of our other fields have," Chankalian said.

One resident however lives across from the softball complex and said he is seeing some dangerous driving and parking as a result of the new fields' use.

"People making U-Turns on North Bay, to park on the berm, even though the south end fields and parking was empty, why would anyone park in the parking lot and walk from the South end to where their Suzy is playing on the North end fields?," said resident Robert Bressman.

He said people are parking on the berm and shoulder closest to the field they'd like to use, regardless of if additional parking is available in the lot.

"Grass and trees were planted on the berm, I had no idea that the berm was actually part of the parking lot for overflow parking or if you needed to get closer to the field your kid was playing on," he said.

"People jumping out of their cars into on coming traffic, wall to wall cars in front of my home, and frankly when the town tells me they know this is going to bring a criminal element to where I live, when I had to go out, I was actually nervous about leaving my home, because there are 400 cars of people who I don't know that are parked across from my house," Bressman said. "This might be heaven for the League, for us who live here it's an eyesore and nightmare."

Chankalian said the ordinance does allow for some parking on the east side of the street, but on the side across from the complex parking is not allowed.

The idea is preventing people from walking across the street crossing traffic and instead trying to keep all visitors parking on the same side as the complex.

"We don't want people walking across the street," Chankalian said. "But this ordinance should open up 50 more spots on the east side, so now you're talking about 250 spots, 300 if we add the berm ones."

Lee June 27, 2012 at 12:37 PM
In the past, Toms River Girls Softball has held one tournament each year in June to raise money for their travel teams, etc. With a little communication between the league and the neighborhood a once a year tournament weekend should not be a major problem.
So Much to Say June 27, 2012 at 01:03 PM
Ticket all the violators. The fines will pay for the upkeep!
Robert Bressman June 27, 2012 at 01:31 PM
The problem has been, there is no communication between the League and the residents, or for that fact the town's position is their way or the highway, they don't listen at TRELL and they haven't listen to me about this either. It took 3 years of complaining about the port john's at TRELL, the league finally put fencing around them so the residents didn't have to look at a porta john 10' off the street in front of their homes. When I go to different fields, I try to think if I lived here is this what I would want. I try to stress that with TRELL and I think they now get it. They are trying to change, unfortunately without the towns help. I posed the same question to the town, if this is where you lived is this what you want? They just don't care, period! When the town starts talking about lease agreements with out of town organizations, and not TR Girls softball, how do control that? Do you think out of town people care, it's not where they live.
Neil Floor June 27, 2012 at 01:59 PM
Only a matter of time until the graffiti monsters will attack.
SystemIsBroken June 27, 2012 at 03:28 PM
NOTHING in New Jersey says "A Criminal Element" more than GIRLS SOFTBALL!!! With all due respect to Mr. Bressman, I think it may be time to consider relocating to perhaps Holiday City, so you can feel more at ease when you and the rest of the residents yell at the neighbors to keep their dogs off your lawn!
Robert Bressman June 27, 2012 at 04:17 PM
@systemisbroken,This isn't what I'm saying, if you read what I wrote, this is what was told to me at a meeting with the Town Planner, the Town Administrator, when the leaders of your town tell you that they realize the complex will bring a criminal element into the area and then tell you the police can't protect an open field, YES, I think I have cause to worry. Before you start telling me where I should live, try reading and understanding what I wrote rather than just popping off with a statement like this.
copperpot June 27, 2012 at 04:19 PM
why would you complain for 3 years? I'm sure you could find something better to do with your time. These sports keep our kids being productive and being fit. Leave it alone, them play, let them park.
almuzer June 27, 2012 at 05:13 PM
As someone who lives near the Little League fields off Coolidge, I sympathize with those residents who are about to be innundated with litter, broken glass, bright lights and noise, cars u-turning in their driveway, and assholes urinating on their lawns. I live just far enough away from the fields, so it really is just a minor nuisance and I choose to move here knowing the fields were there. The softball fields, however, went up in a place where no one who lives in the immediate area would've expected to have their peace, quiet, semi-seclusion and quality of life compromised.
copperpot June 27, 2012 at 05:57 PM
if these are your "problems", you do not live in the real world. Those aren't problems and qualilty of life issues. You have blessed lives if you believe this.
Robert Bressman June 27, 2012 at 06:01 PM
Unlike you I care, not just about where I live, but I care about my town, so when I see something whatever it is, that is wrong I try to get it fixed. Do you even go by those fields and see what those residents contend with? Nobody is saying they can't have the fields to play on, just do the right thing by the residents too.
A-Ball June 27, 2012 at 07:14 PM
Lol all that planning and money for what ? I saw the parking all over the place this weekend...tr is a laughing stock...just wait for the skate Park !
Laci June 27, 2012 at 07:38 PM
The parking issues over here at Toms River East are nolonger what they used to be with cars jamming up the residential streets. It took 2 years with 5 meetings in Mayor Kelahers office which included the township planning department, business administrator, engineer, recreation, building & grounds, Chief Mastronardy, traffic safety and little league officials. The graveled parking lot on Windsor Avenue was expanded and can hold 170 cars, League Road parking was paved for parallel parking only. No parking signs were installed on 8 streets along with yellow curb striping. We get an occasional car usually park right in front of a No Parking sign, but after getting a $85.00 ticket they don't do it again. 99% improvement from what it was.
teatleytea June 27, 2012 at 08:08 PM
People must remember that part of that land (Epstein Farms) is protected wetlands. Am I the only one who feels that "open space" should be just that open space? To the people who are telling the people who live near this softball complex to move if this complex bothers them well, the softball league must remember that these people were there LONG before the softball field was there. How about the softball teams being good neighbors and be respectful of the residents who live there!
Robert Bressman June 27, 2012 at 10:11 PM
The burning question is , Why did it take 2 years to finally do something? it's not like they don't have the money. Other improvements that were asked for, the league was told this is what you get and it's too bad if you don't like it. That is not the way the town should be addressing issues over there.
Laci June 27, 2012 at 11:32 PM
Brez, Canceled meetings because of snowstorms, league officials work obligations ect. Patience paid off and we knew honey was going to payoff more then vinegar, which our 80 pages of photo documentation clearly shown. I can clearly understand your issue but atleast your getting" No Parking" signs quicker without having to go through the motions that we had. The leagues themselves should be responsible for improvements, upgrades and maintenance not the township or taxpayers. Butch Humienik
Seriously? June 28, 2012 at 12:14 AM
I liked that field better when it was still a horse farm.....
Casey June 28, 2012 at 05:14 AM
I think that was rude and uncalled for.....do on to others as you would have them do on to you. Picture a a Sports complex, as beautiful as it is...placed cirectly acrossed the street from your house after years of looking at trees....have a little compassion for the man.
Casey June 28, 2012 at 05:20 AM
LIKE!.....and no I don't live there, but when I drive through there I feell bad, hope they weren't trying to sell their houses.....none of these softball parents are going to want to move there
Ed June 28, 2012 at 05:25 AM
Bressman, your such a cry baby. It's no wonder nobody voted for you.
Casey June 28, 2012 at 05:34 AM
From all the coments, it sounds like people need to respect that people live in the houses nearby. Maybe imagine if that was your home, don't park on their lawn and respect that they may have visiting guests that would like to park in front of their homes. The complex is beautiful and a great thing, but I think we need to respect and underatand the feelings of the complex neighbors.
Robert Bressman June 28, 2012 at 11:51 AM
Ed maybe if people voted for me, Ritacco wouldn't have gotten away with 3 million of yours and our money, as I recall he was the gold standard of superintendents. You were probably too afraid to vote for somebody other than the puppets Ritacco had run for the BOE. I didn't get voted in because people like you failed to look past their noses as to what was going on in the school system and really, what does me not getting elected to the BOE have to do with this.
Robert Bressman June 28, 2012 at 12:20 PM
I gave them pictures too, as for the upgrades and maintenance, the town owns the land, the league doesn't and they don't have the money to do what needs to be done. when the town spends over $500,000 on salaries at the ice rink, sponsors a hockey Team, pours money into the Toms River Little League( have you ever gone there to see those fields) pays for everything for the Girls softball league all on your dime and nobody seems to care, you have to wonder who is the step child here. I told TRELL they should just tell the town they're shutting down, that would go over big, the League that won the World Series not operating anymore. Those fields in the condition they're in are unsafe. When I watch a game on South Street, the foul balls bouncing off this one guys house, strangers walking on the guys lawn to pick up balls, the house has been for sale for almost 2 years, who is going to buy it? It's assessed for over $200,000. The League asked the town for a better backstop to prevent this, do you think the town cares? South Street is still bad and what about the people on Windsor Ave? The town put that field in, do they take care of it? The answer is no, they don't. I go to town hall and talk to these people, the answers you get , you just have to shake your head in disbelief. This is about doing the right thing and the town isn't doing the right thing by the people who live there.
Mr. ? June 28, 2012 at 01:09 PM
Mr. Bressman, well said! Copperpot and Ed are as ignorant and pathetic as they come. For anyone not to understand your situation and ruination of your quality of life and your home.You have been sacrificed for the supposed "greater good", "for the children" Although the Ritacco corruption is a different issue, it is part of the wrapper that operatives such as Copperpot and Ed are involved with...., and I will leave that comment open. You can see their mentality, and no one would accept / enjoy this complex across from their home. This Township should be bending over backwards to satisfy any request you have, but you are only one vote.
copperpot June 28, 2012 at 05:09 PM
This is little league and softball. It is kids who are accompanied by their parents. Everyone on here is acting like a frat party is going on in their front yard. The issue is people are parking in the street. We have real problems in the town, this is not a problem. A car parked in the shoulder of the road will not lessen property value! And it is great to se sports not involving the school system who dumbs too much money into all sports. Mr ?, the only ignorance and pathetic people are ones that resort to name calling on a computer. You have an opinion and someone else does, so you are right? Mr. Bressman, keep running, although i do not agree with this, we can always use change.
Bobby Wilson June 28, 2012 at 05:43 PM
I didnt know softball fields were magnets for criminals and meth heads everywhere. And why cant people park on the street? Really how bad can the traffic be? wah! Im sorry if you didn't realize that when you bought a house next to an empty lot they may eventually develop without asking your permission.
Mr. ? June 29, 2012 at 02:23 AM
Yup, Copperpot I am right in the content of my comment. You asked Mr. Bressman why he was complaining for three years. Guess your not calling him a complainer though? Ignorance is acceptable - not knowing the facts, as you would have to live in his home - but you don't! And you are right, I should not call individuals names. For that I will apologize! Mr. Bressman's issues with this, are much more than just the parking situation and the value of his property has decreased dramatically. It is my opinion, and I think it is pathetic, when comments are made with no other basis than information given in this article. "I'm sure you could find something better to do with your time" AND " if these are your "problems", you do not live in the real world. Those aren't problems and qualilty of life issues" ...trying to protect you home?...really?
Stan Buchwald July 01, 2012 at 11:44 AM
Ya know Mr.Bressman, I was with you about your situation living next to the softball fields,and the quality of life issues your forced into dealing with. However, when you turned and threw out the Ritacco name in a reply,I realized your just an angry person. Angry because you don't get your way. Another thing, clean up that pig sty of a yard. I can't stand looking at it while I watch the games.
copperpot July 03, 2012 at 05:49 PM
Mr. ?, protecting your home from a parent's vehicle parked in the street? Really? And do you lilve in the home? I'm affraid if you read the article, you know the same facts i do. The only difference is I have an open mind to things, you just see one side. I am sorry if you feel like you have to "protect you home" from kids under the age of 12 and their parents who will be parked on a public street for a few hours.
Mr. ? July 03, 2012 at 07:08 PM
Copperpot, DO YOU READ? Seems not! I said " Mr. Bressman's issues with this, are much more than just the parking situation" but your only opinion seems the whole issue is about the parking. And no I don't live in the house. You read an article, take it as complete, (no disrespect to the Patch) and seem to think you know all the issues with this complex and Mr. Bressman. And for your other "one side" address to me, I am all in favor of children's sports, including any recreational facility - if planned right, if it protects residential properties from traffic, parking issues, noise, invasive lighting, if it was built when the economy was better, and all and any the other associated negative aspects. I have not commented on the positive aspects so I don't "just see one side" Also "if I read the article, you (would ) know the same facts I do" I know much more about this than just what is in this article. I also know Mr. Bressman . And your "open mind" Copperpot....."I am sorry if you feel like you have to "protect you home" from kids under the age of 12 and their parents who will be parked on a public street for a few hours. Geez!...ignorance....to all the facts!!
Mr. ? July 03, 2012 at 07:30 PM
Almost forgot Copperpot. Did you read in a corresponding article that trees and shrubs could not be planted (to stop head lights shining on neighbors homes) because in the words of officials it needed to be kept open "to protect from the criminal element? Came to mind when you said "I am sorry if you feel like you have to "protect you home" from kids under the age of 12 and their parents......see above. Just concerned with all the facts... as you said

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