Ask ELi: Why Are Delivery Trucks Blocking Grand River Avenue?

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Monday, September 16, 2019, 9:09 am
By: 
Alice Dreger

Above: An East Lansing worker blocks the lane to empty a City recycling bin.

East Lansing Info (ELi) runs a regular feature called Ask ELi to Investigate. You send us your questions and we try to get the answers.

This came in from a reader:

“Every weekday, sometime between 11 a.m. and 1:15 p.m., I drive from Okemos to Lansing on Grand River Avenue. Almost every time, for years, the right lane (closest to the stores), has been held hostage by delivery trucks, EL City vehicles, students dropping off/picking up their friends, UPS / FedEX, etc., parked or standing and waiting forcing traffic in that lane to have to merge over to the left. This causes undue congestion, people getting angry and frustrated, people cutting people off, and CATA buses aggressively merging over.”

Continues the reader, “Since many of these shops have alleys behind them, as well as a number of north/south streets running very nearby each block, I question why PACE or the ELPD doesn’t make these vehicles move elsewhere as they hinder traffic on a daily basis, like clockwork.”

We asked ELPD’s Deputy Chief Steve Gonzalez to answer this one. He responded:

“Our Police and PACE Officers are proactive in directing delivery drivers to the alleyways and moving people along from blocking the travel lanes as their responsibilities and calls for service allow. We will also send a PACE Officer in response to any complaints of the travel lanes being blocked.”

Adds Gonzalez, “We take an educational approach to these efforts by advising the operators of the conditions they cause when they violate a parking ordinance or impede traffic; however, there are times when a citation results from the driver’s actions. Each situation can have varying circumstances and we rely on the officers to make the best use of their discretion when addressing a complaint.”

See someone blocking the lane? Call ELPD’s non-emergency number at (517) 351-4220 and report it.

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