Beardsley Park Deadbeats Cause Traffic Danger

Marilyn Middlemass, veteran member of the Bridgeport Democratic Town Committee, is ripping mad over illegal parking on East Main Street causing dangerous situations for drivers and pedestrians in her Upper East Side neighborhood near Beardsley Park. Deadbeats park on East Main Street, she says, to avoid paying the park entrance fee. She has complained to police and City Council members from her district, to no avail. So she made a pitch to the entire City Council Monday night. It raises a question, if requests from party regulars fall on deaf ears, what about regular folk? Here’s what she said:

I reside at 119 Hickory Street, about a block and a half from the entrance to Beardsley Park.

For the past two years, particularly on Saturdays and Sundays, I have noticed a vast amount of vehicles parked on the shoulder on East Main Street. The shoulder I am referring to is alongside Beardsley Park. This stretch of highway is notoriously known as “dead man’s curve.” Through the years, there have been many fatal and near-fatal crashes.

On Saturday, June 1st, my husband and I went out for a ride on our motorbikes. He is an experienced motorcycle rider, and I, a “new” scooter rider. We headed out of Bridgeport towards Trumbull on Route 127 (point B). As we rounded the curve near Evers Street, we couldn’t help but notice all the vehicles parked on both sides of the street and on the side street, Beverly Place (area 1). At Beverly Place, adults and children were attempting to cross the busy and cramped highway. Later, when my husband and I had stopped to take a break, we both commented that what we had seen on East Main Street earlier, was “an accident waiting to happen.”

We enjoyed our ride that afternoon and started to head home taking the same route back. As we approached Bridgeport from Trumbull on Route 127 (point A), most of vehicles we saw earlier were still there. The only difference was traffic was now backed up and moving slowly. As we approached the area circled, between area 1 and 2 we saw there was an accident that had just occurred maybe 10 to 15 minutes earlier (Police were on the scene).

In my motorcycle safety course, which I just recently completed, we are told that there are many factors present in the cause of an accident. While I am not aware of ALL the factors involved on June 1st, I know of at least one that could have been a contributing factor. That factor is that the parked cars limited the space and visibility on the road that day. In my class, we also talk about a “margin of safety.” I know I felt that I only had a small “margin of safety” while on that stretch of road (area 1) that day.

I like to have fun and enjoy myself as much as the next person. The question is “At what cost to all concerned?” The people who are illegally parking on that road are not only getting a “free day at the park,” literally, but they are also making that roadway unsafe for vehicles and pedestrians.

After making numerous complaints to the police, park police, and the council members who live in the area, I am here to plead with you all, do the right thing in this matter. See to it that the laws regarding parking on the shoulder of a roadway are enforced. Make sure that the city is reaping the rewards of people actually having to park inside the park. And most importantly, please do this so that we can limit the factors that contribute to the amount of accidents that continue to occur in this area. The next accident could easily be you or someone in your family.

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6 comments

  1. Unsafe road conditions. Illegal parking? Avoiding the expense of a Park Fee, or what?

    Congratulations to Marilyn for opening the public speaking session with a well-reasoned complaint that has not found satisfaction at any other level she has reported to. Let’s see our government in action now.

    Marilyn stayed around for three other public speakers and for local honors to the Bridgeport Pride Drum and Bugle corps where Council persons Amy Vizzo-Paniccia and Mike Marella perform on cymbals and trumpet respectively.

    We then had three separate hearings on downtown property development chaired by the Mayor in full Council session. No one spoke on the first two. I appeared, as a last-minute decision on my part, to suggest material might be made available to the public at such a hearing, or possibly even a statement made by the Council Committee chair. The Mayor responded to me I can read about the subject in the CT Post or in the ECDE Committee minutes. Of course, there was no material discussion of the subject “details” for the taxpayers! Time will tell.

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  2. There seems to be an easy answer here, Mayor Bill Finch lives right there across the street from Beardsley Park, has this issue been bought to his attention and if it has, what did he say?

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    1. Ron, the mayor is well aware of the number of deadly accidents that have happened here. He has in the past acknowledged there is a problem here. The state is aware there is a problem here and installed blinking lights here.
      What they are not aware of is the amount of parking that takes place here on the weekends. The writer of this article has contacted all of the authorities, all to no avail. Typical for Bpt, quality of life issues mean nothing.

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  3. I know of at least one council member who does not feel it is an issue for the city. This council member, initials JH, feels it’s an issue for the state police. What a “hollow head.” Don’t the homeowners on that road pay taxes to the city? If there is an accident, who responds, Bridgeport!

    Anything to shirk responsibility!!!

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