CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – Some residents in a downtown Charleston neighborhood say they’re frustrated with the street sweeping process, mostly because of cars getting towed before the service.

“Yeah, I think it’s theft honestly,” Rutledge Avenue resident, Chris Gardner said.

Gardner says it’s a burden to remember when they’re required to move their cars and that the city’s towing is getting out of hand.

“It’s at these random times people aren’t even going to remember and there’s not even much to sweep,” Gardner said.

However, the city says it’s a burden the residents asked for.

Street sweeping only occurs after a request from the neighborhood, according to Becca Hopkins with the city’s neighborhood services division.

Hopkins said the neighborhood “brings a petition showing that the majority of the residents in the area want this program.” The city then reviews the need and decides whether they will provide services to that area.

Before the city begins sweeping, they post signage to alert the residents of the sweeping schedule.

Hopkins says it’s not meant to be an inconvenience, but it’s a necessity if they want the streets swept.

“A lot of those streets are really tight and if there are any cars actually parked on that side of the street, the sweeper might not be able to get down the street at all,” Hopkins said.

The city says they’ve towed about 200 cars in street-sweeping spots over the last month, and there is a $125 to get the cars back.

Hopkins says it’s up to residents to stay informed and the city has several ways to access the information.

“Paying attention to the signs, anytime you park downtown it’s very important because you may be in a street sweeping or residential zone,” Hopkins said.

In addition to the signage, the City of Charleston says they also have a reminder system set up where residents can receive texts on the days leading up to a sweep and the morning of.

Requests for the city’s street sweeping program can be made by clicking this link.