Developer says parking management needed downtown

Augusta Officials Looking At Downtown Parking Plan (Image 1)

AUGUSTA,Ga ( WJBF) Bryan Haltermann was fine when Augusta commissioners rejected the plan for parking meters downtown in 2015 but he’s now changing his mind.

“We need to increase the amount of parking we have and the way you do that is by management and turn over for the curb side parking,” said Bryan Haltermann.

Haltermann is scheduled to go before the commission Engineering Committee Tuesday to tell commissioners to help downtown development they need to put in plan to manage parking in the area, including paid metered parking.

“There are all types of high tech machines now where you use your smart phone and credit cards where it won’t be the old things your feeding quarters there may not be on per parking space but there may be one per block,” he said.

But some downtown regulars say the last thing that’s needed is to start charging people who come to the area to park.

“I love downtown that would make a lot less people come downtown I think personally especially since they’re use to not having to pay to park,” said Maacah Casanova, of Augusta

Mina Hinkle has owned her Broad Street women s clothing store for 28 years, she supports metered parking and says workers downtown take up spaces near here store all day and that’s costing her business.

“I’ve lost a lot of my customers because they say they couldn’t find a parking space they go around and around two or three times and they leave,” Hinkle said.

Any successful downtown you go to has some sort of management of parking we’ve kind of gotten along without it thus far but we’re at a critical point now,” said Haltermann.

The Downtown Development Authority has been a big supporter of parking meters and its director says the organization is ready to help if commissioners want to go in that   direction now.

However Director Margret Woodard says an updated Parking study for downtown would likely be needed the current one is from 2005.

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