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Downtown Youngstown's parking problems prompt plan for meters on W. Federal



Published: Sat, February 25, 2012 @ 12:08 a.m.

By David Skolnick

skolnick@vindy.com

YOUNGSTOWN

In reaction to complaints from downtown business owners about vehicular parking, the city plans to install 13 or 14 one-hour-maximum pay meters on a section of West Federal Street, as long as city council agrees.

“The parking is horrible; it’s killing the revitalization of downtown,” said Richard Thomashow, owner of Jerry Lee’s Jewelry in 20 Federal Place. “I’m 100 percent in favor of meters. But we need to have people patrol with more frequency for enforcement.”

The city is digging holes for the meters on West Federal Street between Phelps and Market streets. The city-owned 20 Federal Place office building is in the heart of that area.

The problem, local business owners say, is employees who work downtown are parking in the area, moving every two hours — the limit to park in a spot downtown — to avoid getting a ticket. Also, there isn’t much parking-limit enforcement later in the day and on the weekends, they said.

City council will consider legislation at its March 7 meeting to consider the meters, which would cost 75 cents for one hour with a one-hour limit, on that section of West Federal Street, said Charles Shasho, deputy director of the city public-works department. If council approves the proposal, the meters will be installed shortly thereafter, Shasho said.

“We’re trying to benefit the local businesses on Federal Street and trying to provide more parking,” he said. “Downtown workers are in those spots and just move around” to another spot after two hours.

“Parking meters are the only solution as long as they are more than a quarter,” said Barry Silver, owner of Silver’s Vogue Shop, across the street from 20 Federal Place. “I think 75 cents is fine because if someone has to move their car two or three times, they’ll be paying about the same as they would for a parking lot. Downtown workers are taking away parking from me and other downtown businesses.”

Silver said his business is being adversely impacted by downtown workers parking in spots near his shop. Some of the store’s customers, Silver said, don’t come downtown because they can’t find a parking space.

The V2 Wine Bar Trattoria, located in the Federal Building on the corner of West Federal and Phelps streets, will start offering valet parking to its customers Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights in a few weeks, said Ed Moses, a co-owner.

“There’s not enough parking downtown,” he said. “People don’t want to walk.” With valet service, “people won’t have to worry about finding parking downtown.”

V2 will park their customers’ cars in a lot behind the Federal Building.

V2’s owners are deciding whether the service will be free or if they’ll charge a nominal fee of $1 to $2 per vehicle, Moses said.


Comments

1bmanresident(597 comments)posted 2 years, 8 months ago

Perhaps they need to tear down those dumps they call movie theaters and make those parking lots rather than wasting a bunch of money to save it as a historical project. And as far as valet parking downtown, watch our cars get stolen by imposters, it is Youngstown you know.

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2whitesabbath(738 comments)posted 2 years, 8 months ago

Just watch an episode of " PARKING WARS." You will get a whole new picture of how things will be run.

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3hmm(183 comments)posted 2 years, 8 months ago

An hour parking isn't long enough, I have yet been able to go downtown eat with the family OR go to the. Court house in less than an hour due to having to walk ...

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4ytownsteelman(631 comments)posted 2 years, 8 months ago

If the current limit is 2 hours then make the meters 2 hours. I hate parking meters and just having them will tend to make me go out of downtown for lunch.

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5shehateme(9 comments)posted 2 years, 8 months ago

The employees that are hogging these parking spots are VXI. Lets not pretend we don`t know who they are. They are the same ones the city lets smoke in front of 20 Federal.

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6city_resident(513 comments)posted 2 years, 8 months ago

We don't need more parking lots. It seems like half of downtown has already been torn down for parking. But, I agree that 2 hours would be a better time limit on the meters.

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7commoncitizen(961 comments)posted 2 years, 8 months ago

If they know who is parking in these spaces (seems to be the same cars?) then why not ask the businesses involved to talk to their people because it does effect their customers coming downtown. Or let the businesses pay towards parking (in lots) for their employees.

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8juggygails(24 comments)posted 2 years, 8 months ago

People you are downtown ya know walking a little bit won't hurt you.

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