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Charlottesville Seeks Public Input with Parking Surveys

Posted: Updated: May 18, 2015 04:05 PM
Metered parking spots in Charlottesville Metered parking spots in Charlottesville
Market Street Parking Garage in Charlottesville Market Street Parking Garage in Charlottesville
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (WVIR) -

Finding parking in downtown Charlottesville or near the University of Virginia Corner area can be difficult at times.

Charlottesville's Office of Economic Development (OED) is trying to make some improvements, and is now asking for input from the public.

It has been seven years since the city collected any information or parking statistics for downtown. Now, Charlottesville has three surveys out that are trying to get to the heart of business owners, employees and the general public's frustrations.

"It is expensive sometimes, and it's difficult with the street parking and especially when construction is going on there is reduced parking around here," said Boylan Heights Manager Lindsey Daniels.

Daniels sees first-hand people's frustrations with trying to find parking spaces around the UVA Corner.

In downtown Charlottesville, there are more parking garages but that's not solving the problem.

"The two-hour shuffle has been happening for some time, and that's due to the fact that we don't meet our on-street parking,” said Chris Engel with OED, describing the city's free 2-hour parking spaces.

The OEC is hopeful the surveys will help find a way to improve the situation.

"Employees particularly move their car throughout the day, which is inefficient for them and for their employer, as well as it ties up parking spaces that could be better used by a visitor," Engel said.

Daniels says she hopes results from the survey will bring more metered spaces near her bar and downtown. "With the free spaces that are an hour or two hours, people will stay and stay and stay and risk it, you know. So I think that the meters probably help as far as people being responsible," she said.

"It'll be difficult to please everybody, but we'll try," said Engel.

Charlottesville's Office of Economic Development says the parking surveys will be open for another two to three weeks.

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