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i know this has been talked about.... just curious what's been said. what are the pros and cons of doing this? would it save the landlords all the money they pay for those spaces in front of their buildings, and then in turn make rent cheaper for the business owners who are renting?

Tags: main, meters, parking

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Landlords pay for parking spaces? That's a new one on me. For a while, the city tried to charge a one-time fee for each space they said a building required based on occupancy, and to open a restaurant the restaurant owner was required to pay a fee per space. There were loopholes and outrage and I believe they stopped that. The city used to have meters, as you can see in photos from the 50s/60s and maybe 70s. If the city puts back in meters, they are not going to give landlords any kickback.
One of the best kept weekend parking secrets in Beacon is the lot at the county building. Parking there is free from 8-6 on Saturdays and Sundays, but you'd never know it. I think the only car I've seen there during those times is my own.
The advantage to the meters would be: the prevention of people parking all day at a particular spot. Now we could have a parking person, meter maid, chalk the cars and ticket them, which I believe is done occasionally. I see cars parked all day, every day parked on the street, preventing shopping. Even the store owners/renters don't seem to understand the problem and park where their customers could be parking. I think that lot behind the Hudson Glass should be monitored so shoppers could park there instead of it being full of residents cars.

The problem with meters are people are going to expect additional services. I had to park in Kingston this past winter, several times and it was horrible. You had to climb over a huge snow bank to get to the meter and climb back to cross the street. I heard several people complaining about paying to climb 4 ft snow banks, which were very dangerous. The snow banks couldn't be cleared because of meters all over the sidewalk. The stores had signs "please don't tell me about the parking meters" and "No change". I had to climb back over the bank to add dimes and quarters after buying stuff.
Birdy, do you have any ideas about where the residents should park, if not behind HBG?
I don't see many cars on the street beyond the block, do you? They are all in the lot. It can be very hard to find parking if you want to shop on that block. Its one thing if they are parked there over night but during the day, all day? That parking should be limited to so many hours a day during the day like near the train station.
Birdy, I'm curious, do you live on Main St?
No, but I want to shop in town. Both of the west end Main street lots have the big P sign on them. That implies they are city parking lots and should be available to shoppers. Today I drove past thinking I would stop for a cone of ice cream at Jane's. Alas, since there was no spaces on the block before nor that block, I did not stop. Who wants to park 4 blocks away for a cone of ice cream?
Further punishing car owners is a mistake for a place where drive-by traffic is needed for business, I'd keep on driving if I was being shaken down, it also hurts those who can't walk far. The meters went away for a reason, they were an epic failure.
I grew up in a small town in PA with a meter system and a very vibrant downtown. The money there is used almost ex lusively to maintain the streets, something which is clearly desperately needed here. Sure, times are tight --for everyone. However, if people are not willing to contribute to the betterment of the town in exchange for the right to park on main street, then they (and we along with them) will live in a trashy town.
For gods sake, it's not that hard to stick a coin or two in a meter, especially when it could really help the town.

I am resurrecting an old thread because it sounds like parking meters on Main are being considered again by the City Council.  They were discussed for some time at the 1/6/14 workshop/meeting.  Instead of "old school" coin machines they are looking at "smart" meters.  So, when you park on Main, you would walk to a one of the 10 or so meters, pay for some amount of time, and enter your license plate.

I would love to hear more from this community about your opinion on this issue?  What are the pros and cons?

--Greg

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