This is so incredible that I quote directly from the local paper
Some downtown Port Huron business owners said last year’s decision to get rid of parking meters is compounding longtime parking problems, according to the Port Huron Times Herals. Terry Nolan, owner of Irish Rose Gifts and Travel, said the decision is part of a three-pronged problem that is making it more difficult for customers to find parking near her business.
Since parking in the Majestic lot behind her business was made free in October, people living in downtown lofts choose to park in prime spots during the day — and not the spaces reserved for loft tenants in the back of the four-row parking lot.She said the spots reserved for loft tenants remain empty most of the time while spots customers most desire are filled.
Nolan and several other business owners on Huron Avenue between Grand River Avenue and Quay Street said the parking problems are driving away customers just as the downtown is making strides toward revival. Late last year, the city council voted to eliminate paid parking for most of downtown, a move meant to encourage people to frequent the shops and restaurants.
The meters have been a hot-button issue in the city for several years. Many have argued the meters should be removed as a way to entice people downtown and allow stores to compete with the Birchwood Mall in Fort Gratiot and big box stores, where parking is free and plentiful.
Some business owners said it’s not only loft tenants taking up the free spots. Downtown employees and business owners also are parking in the spaces for lengthy stretches.To help relieve the problem, the city gave some downtown workers 60 free passes to park in McMorran Place’s lots, but officials there said that is reducing revenue for the downtown civic center.
City leaders said they are working on a solution.
What did they expect to happen, as says correspondent Mark. So the downtown has decided that the reason they can’t compete is that malls give ‘free’ parking. It has nothing to do with the fact that the mall is inside, warm, has great street scenes, good people watching, theaters, bars, clubs, and great stores.
If you build it they will come…If you give free on street parking, you will have chaos.