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Employee Parking Program benefits businesses, others | Letters | May 28
We have learned that the “Employee Parking Program” managed by the Chamber of Commerce at the behest of the city, has come under review. As a business that benefits greatly from this program, we would like to offer our perspective.
Island Fitness employs more than 20 full-time and close to 50 part-time employees. Many come from off-island, and while some use public transportation, this is not an option for all. Schedules are nontraditional, so carpooling does not work.
We are a very active business which generates approximately 500 member visits a day. We manage this with less than 70 parking spaces. When club traffic is the highest, there is also the greatest need for employees to be on site. It is not uncommon to have 30 employees in the building during certain times.
Over the years we have made arrangements with other business and property owners, but have run into significant roadblocks, most generated by the city. If property owners want to allow parking on their property, the hoops they are required to jump through make the process prohibitive.
The parking program provides a limited number of spaces which allow business owners in the downtown core to be able to reasonably ensure that their employees can find off-street parking, leaving what street parking there is, for customers.
We all know parking is extremely tight in Winslow. The Employee Parking Program represents a win/win for the community, business owners and the public at large.
The public is much more likely to find street parking near the establishment they wish to visit and business owners are able to provide low cost parking solutions to their employees.
Eliminating it would not eliminate vehicles from the downtown core, but rather redistribute them in ways that we feel could hurt businesses, many of which are already struggling.
Michael and Alexa Rosenthal