Getting It Right
Yesterday, I complained that the city should not be waiving parking fees downtown on one of its busiest days of the year, but should instead raise the fees. The city is constrained, however, by the archaic technology of most of the parking meters. Well, it didn’t take long for some of my ideas to get implemented, even if it happened in a different part of the city. From the Riverfront Times:
The parking meters in Grand Center that used to shut down at 7 p.m. each night (allowing free parking to theater-goers and gallery patrons) have been dialed back to 10 p.m.
[…] Since April 1, drivers who don’t feed the meter after 7 p.m. have been issued a warning and served with a flier alerting them to the change. The grace period ends May 1. After that, parking scofflaws will get a $10 ticket. Parking rates for the meters are 25 cents per 20 minutes.
As KSDK reporte[d] earlier this spring, Grand Center Inc. is partnering with the city in the new parking policy and will get a portion of the revenues from the meters. Grand Center Inc. wants to use that money to build a new parking garage in the district, according to the television station.
[…] “We’re happy that some of the parking meters will allow you to park for four hours instead of 90 minutes,” says Pinmann. “That would give people enough time to see a show and stay longer.”
In January Grand Center began a $10 valet service that offers people a $5 discount if they get their ticket validated after dining at a restaurant.
Kudos to Grand Center Inc. for implementing a policy that both efficiently rations parking spaces in midtown and will allow them to improve the area. A shortage of parking spaces is not a problem that most areas in the Saint Louis region face on a regular basis, but let’s hope it becomes one — and that, when it does, area leaders will have the wisdom to charge for the spots.