CEDAR FALLS, Iowa (KCRG) – Throughout a particular assembly Wednesday, the Cedar Falls metropolis council unanimously voted to droop charges in public parking tons within the downtown and Faculty Hill areas till subsequent April, a transfer that got here on the behest of the native enterprise neighborhood.
Town stated the suspension would cost at least $5,000 a month in revenue, and workers stated throughout the assembly that Cedar Falls was closely invested in its parking program, having spent about $200,000 in research and implementation over the previous few years.
However earlier this week, Cedar Falls Group Foremost Avenue despatched a letter to metropolis leaders, encouraging them to droop the paid parking system till July 1, 2021, and saying, “We really feel that the pandemic is much from over, and the companies are in want of this measure of help in our downtown district proper now.”
Town had quickly suspended parking charges earlier within the pandemic, an motion supported by Johna Petersen, the proprietor of The Pump Haus Pub & Grill downtown.
“October is after they began imposing it, and we bought a lot pushback from our prospects,” Petersen stated. “Folks have been upset, and there’s different locations you possibly can go to park at no cost, in order that’s the place they began going.”
Petersen stated parking woes have been a longstanding drawback in downtown Cedar Falls, and the implementation of paid tons final 12 months didn’t alleviate them.
The parking drawback is a twofold challenge downtown: Avenue parking is free, however there are deadlines, and spots could be onerous to come back by, particularly on Foremost Avenue.
“Generally the road parking, it’s onerous to get out and in with out avoiding an accident,” stated Lauren Thome of Waterloo, who visits Cedar Falls about as soon as per week.
Then again, whereas it’s simpler to discover a spot in one of many public tons off Foremost Avenue, drivers usually need to pay to park there.
Petersen stated drivers who aren’t acquainted with Cedar Falls’ parking insurance policies may not know spots within the tons aren’t free.
“Clearly we want higher signage. This says, ‘public parking’ again right here, but it surely doesn’t have a greenback signal or something to that nature,” she stated.
Petersen stated the lack of prospects due to parking points has grow to be a fair worse loss in latest weeks as a result of The Pump Haus can’t serve prospects at its historically busiest hours due to a statewide emergency proclamation.
“Now we’re closed down at 10 o’clock, so there isn’t any late night time, and a majority of our income comes from that,” she stated.
Petersen stated she doesn’t know what answer would fulfill each downtown companies and town, placing ahead the thought of paid lot parking throughout daytime hours on weekdays and free lot parking on weekday nights and weekends as a attainable possibility.
She, nevertheless, wish to see downtown do away with paid parking for good.
“I don’t know if that’s affordable,” Petersen stated. “However for proper now, because of COVID, that is undoubtedly a win.”
Within the meantime, Petersen stated The Pump Haus wants extra daytime prospects, like Thome, who stated she would favor to maintain her cash out of the pay machines.
“I’d somewhat pay extra to help a small enterprise than not have to fret about parking or paying to park,” Thome stated.
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