Wheels fall off plans to control truck parking

Residents in Netanya are in despair after long-running efforts to solve the problem of massive trucks parking at night in residential streets appear to have ground to a halt, reports www.local.co.il. Despite thousands of residents suffering from the inconvenience, it seems all attempts to put a brake on the problem have run off the road, at least for now. According to the report, Netanya has grappled with the nightly truck invasions for more than a decade, with residents complaining of exhaust fumes and dust, of being awakened by truck engines early in the mornings, and of being left with a chronic lack of parking space for their own cars. Some time ago, the city made an apparent attempt to solve the problem by introducing a by-law that prohibits vehicles weighing more than 10 tons from parking in residential streets at night, but the law was never enforced. Last August, the city announced that it would begin enforcing the law and was trying to arrange that a private car park in the area of the train station be made available for truck parking at night. But about two months ago, those discussions fell apart. The report said that by law Netanya could not begin enforcing its law against trucks parking in residential areas at night until it arranged alternative parking for them. The report said that a private entrepreneur specializing in car parks had recently sought out and found a suitable five-dunam block of land to turn into a truck parking lot, but the city had responded "laconically," at first saying the land was inadequate and then saying that because the law was not being enforced, the matter was not relevant. City councilor Haim Fridrich said the city could have solved the truck problem long ago if it had been willing to let private entrepreneurs find suitable land and authorize its use for truck parking. A municipal spokesman said the city had been planning to use one particular block of land, but "to our great sorrow" the entrepreneur had "disappointed" the city and the plans had not been realized. "The conclusion that is asked for is that there is no choice but to authorize municipal land (for use as a truck parking lot) and not to rely on private entrepreneurs alone," the spokesman said. He added that the city was currently considering allocating municipal land for a truck parking lot.