Residents fed up with parking tickets in their own driveways

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- Imagine coming home from a hard day's work and having to be concerned about where you park. That's what residents in the Clearwood Crossing subdivision say they are dealing with.

We lost count of how many people told us they've gotten parking tickets in their own driveway. The issue is many of their cars block the sidewalk. But some tell Eyewitness News they're also getting tickets parking on the street. They're fed up and came to us for help.

"I got no room for my cars. I don't know what to do," says Cesar Martinez.

Cesar Martinez says his family has six cars, and they've gotten several tickets for blocking the sidewalk at the end of his driveway.

"Sometimes I'm in a rush," he says. "I go inside, and when I come back I find this ticket on my windshield. I'm not the only one."

"The situation is the driveway is not long enough to accommodate four vehicles fully," adds Felix Haynes. "So as a result, the tailgate pretty much blocks the walk way."

Haynes tells us he and his family have even damaged their garage door trying to fit all their cars in without blocking the sidewalk.

"When you get home like after a long day's work, you can't even come to your crib and relax. You gotta always be worrying about if you're going to get a citation," says Haynes' brother Charlie Charles.

Maria Irshad, Assistant Director for the City of Houston's Parking Management division, says this is common city-wide.

"Usually what people do is they park on their driveway, and they call us very upset: 'I'm parked on my driveway, why are you giving me a ticket?'" Irshad says.

Her answer is simple: safety.

"We have folks who are walking down the sidewalk, and if a car is there then they're forced to go into the street. You have kids. You might have someone on a bike, strollers, wheelchairs."

But in Clearwood Crossing, it doesn't end there. Two people told us off camera that they got tickets while parked on the street. Francisco says the parking enforcement officer just gave him a warning.

"...that we can't park here because the signs over there say we can't park over here at all," he tells us.

But there is no such sign on his side of the street.

A spokesman for the homeowners' association's management company in Dallas says providing alternative seems to be something that would work for everybody.

That spokesman tells us they're going to encourage the local HOA board to have a dialogue with the residents and listen to their concerns, and then work with parking management and whatever entities would need to be involved to find an acceptable solution.
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