Uber driver asks city to change parking at The Banks

Safety concerns spur conversation of possible parking changes at The Banks

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - One local man's plans for a safety overhaul could eventually change the way you park at The Banks.

It's no secret the Banks is a popular place, and in a little less than two weeks it'll be even busier when the Reds return to town.

"There's going to be a lot more people here, a lot more traffic, a lot more children," said Scott Sizemore.  He wrote an email to city administrators asking that they take measures to enhance pedestrian safety at The Banks.

Sizemore picks up and drops off a lot of those people at The Banks as an Uber driver on the weekends.  He says things aren't as safe as they could be, so he sent an email to city hall asking them to look at parking along Freedom Way.

He's proposing eliminating on-street parking on Freedom Way to provide areas for taxis, ride-share drivers, family and friends to safely drop people off.  He says people are not using crosswalks and winding through traffic to get to their destination.

"Let's remove the parking from Freedom Way because it's not very many spots anyway so that we can have a safe environment to pick up and drop off," Sizemore suggests.

When it's busy Sizemore says he's seen cars double and triple park trying to drop people off.  He claims he's also seen cars drive around other stopped cars because they don't want to wait, all while passengers are getting in and out of cars.

"It triggered a thought that, 'You know, that's consistent with what I've seen,'" said Cincinnati Vice Mayor David Mann.

Sizemore's idea was part of city council's agenda on Wednesday.  Mann says he expects city leaders will take a good look at Sizemore's claims and plan.

"The traffic and engineering department will take a look at it, and I'm guessing we may find that he's got some good ideas here," Mann said.

Sizemore told FOX19 NOW he's asking for a change for just Friday and Saturday nights and not just for him, but for anyone who picks someone up or drops them off.

"They're in the car with me - I feel responsible for them that I pick them up in a safe manner and I drop them off in a safe manner," Sizemore said.

Sizemore also expressed concern about the way police officers park cruisers in the middle of Freedom Way from time to time.  In an email response from Mayor John Cranley given to FOX19 NOW by Sizemore, Cranley says he forwarded his concerns to the Cincinnati Police Central Business District Captain.  Cranley writes that police, "will evaluate the parking and vehicle safety at The Banks, as well as the Police vehicle parking you outline in your email."

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