Friday, June 30, 20069 comments
The detour around 4th Circle has been rerouted to pass behind the Prime Ministry. As I was passing through today, I noticed a nice double-decker parking garage reserved specifically for Prime Ministry staff. So despite the fact that Amman suffers from practically no parking infrastructure, the government can justify their own private lot.
This is not an isolated issue; government officials around the world—civil servants who are employed to act in the best interests of the people—always appear to serve their own interests before serving the interests of their constituents. It’s rare to see a civil servant who suffers with the people. But the reason it bothers me is this: Amman is beginning to face a parking conundrum of epic proportions.
Why does the government allow businesses, commercial centers and apartment buildings to build structures without adequate parking? It seems like the majority of the new buildings are being built practically on top of the street. New(er) stores such as Safeway or Cozmo don’t have enough parking spaces to supply the need. Mecca Mall has had to undergo a new parking garage addition to accommodate vehicle traffic. And the majority of mosques, which can expect a large influx at least once a week, don’t bother with parking areas of any kind.
The problem is exacerbated when traveling downtown where all but the most inaccessible places are designated as “no parking” zones and where ticket-happy police are more than eager to fine helpless violators. Other traffic-heavy areas, such as Shmesani, don’t have enough available parking on the streets to handle the daily infusion of business people, shoppers and diners.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: someone needs to fire the Amman city planner for incompetence and outright stupidity. Something must be done to handle the growing traffic needs in the city! The infrastructure needs some serious revamping. Future solutions must be carefully planned out and implemented and alternative means of transportation should be pursued. I still believe a subway would be a viable solution, but considering the length of time it has taken to complete the new Abdoun bridge and 4th Circle, I’ve all but given up hope.
By the way, where does one pay for accrued parking tickets in this city?