`They do it at their Peril


`They do it at their Peril


Hollywood, FL, is planning to remove its parking meters. Why? The usual reason – they want to support downtown merchants.

Reader Mark says it as well as I:

Another city blaming parking for the woes of downtown businesses.  Do you think any of these politicians have ever stopped and thought about the fact that maybe the reason people go to other places for shopping is because there are SO MANY other places to go.  I read somewhere recently that the amount of retail space per capita in the US has almost tripled in the last 20 years while the amount of retail spending per capita has only increased about 15%.  It’s just takes simple math to figure out what the problem is, and it sure ain’t parking. 

I’m not sure I agree with is consulsions, but frankly, downtowns must begin to be more competitive. As the article says, Ft Lauderdale, Miami, and Coral Gables have on street parking charges, and don’t seem to be having a problem with their glitzy shopping areas.

I seem to remember that Hollywood is a bit, how should I say it, “caught in the 1950’s” and although deco is the way it is in Florida, a bit of an upgrade might be in order.


John Van Horn

John Van Horn

4 Responses

  1. Yea downtowns make the mistake thinking they need to supply so much parking to get people to come and shop. What they should do is reduce parking (normally downtowns actually have a massive oversupply) and increase population density so people can walk to the shops.

  2. I own a business on Hollywood Blvd and DO NOT beleive that “free” parking is whats needed. However, I do beleive that 8 am til midnight 7 days a week, including holidays is a bit much.
    I think 8am to 8pm Monday – Friday, 8am to 5 pm on Saturday, and Free on Sundays and Holidays would be better suited. But I’m still not convienced that parking on Hollywood Blvd. is the issue for lack of business.
    We have unlimited opportunity here on Hollywood Blvd to generate traffic. I don’t see the “Arts Park” being utilized much. There should be events every weekend! Example… Antique fleamarket every other Saturday. Let’s have an Art Fair on the Blvd. twice a year. Movie night at the arts park every week. A sidewalk sale once a month (but we would need more shops) There should have been a HUGE Christmas tree in the park, and lights in the trees along the blvd, and had a tree lighting ceramony! Wine walks along the blvd!
    I see high rents as the problem for business’s not being able to make it here. We have a WHOLE block with an empty building, and I would say close to 20 empty store fronts on top of that! wouldn’t it make more sense to reduce the rent a little and have a long term tenant, then to have a tenant for 4 months and an empty store for 8 months?
    As far as the lack of traffic…there’s nothing on the blvd to attract people, except restaurants! We have a pawn shop, a great mens clothing store but closes at 5 PM (too early I think), and a couple nic-nac thift stores, and know what seems to be a community center for high school kids to hang out (not a good addition to the street)! there’s nothing to speak of that would make people want to say lets go to such and such a place on hollywood blvd, then have dinner, or “let’s go to the antique fair then get something to eat.
    Las Olas Blvd. is a great example of what Hollywood Blvd could be. there are many shops that attract people to stroll the streets before or after dinner. Yes, they have the River front near by, but we have the Arts Park! AND THEY ALSO HAVE METERED PARKING!!!!

  3. JVH has a very importat fact, and it is true!! There are more places to shop than money in pockets or bank accounts!!
    But I think there’s another reason to leave cars at home and get organized with neighbors to use 1 car instead of 3 or 4 and it is ANVIRONMENT!!

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