No need for meters or parking garage in Waco yet

Posted at 6:07 PM, Aug 15, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-15 19:46:48-04

The City of Waco took another step Tuesday to improve and increase parking downtown.

The City Center Waco executive director Megan Henderson presented a parking study to the Waco City Council.

"As a system, downtown is changing very, very fast. Our growth is much more rapid, certainly in Waco, than we've seen in a long time and so we're not only trying to solve the parking problems and challenges of today, we're trying to get ahead of those challenges so that we continue to enjoy good development and parking is not getting in the way of that," Henderson said.

Henderson said one of the biggest takeaways from the study was that there is an inefficient and confusing parking system.

Many businesses restrict their parking, meaning lots stay empty at night or during the day, and many parking spots aren't clearly labeled, meaning drivers don't know to park in them.

Henderson said there are simple solutions to both problems, sharing parking and striping on-street parking. She said that would increase parking and save money.

"If we're not energetically looking at ways to share parking, we are guaranteed to fill in wasted space and that's space that could be spent on other businesses and activities and things for people to enjoy and those are dollars that could be spent on real development," Henderson said.

Henderson also said the city might have to put in some meters or another parking garage in a few years, but not right now because she said they would be a drain not a money-maker for the city at the moment.

City council members said they were pleased with the presentation and wanted to start looking at the costs of the recommendations.

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