Updated 04/04/2012 08:50 PM
Debate over diagonal parking in Downtown North Adams
Drivers who hate the pain of parallel parking along a strip of Main Street in North Adams could soon be in luck. Our Brandon Walker has more on a plan to bring diagonal parking to the street.
To view our videos, you need to
install Adobe Flash 9 or above. Install now.
Then come back here and refresh the page.
NORTH ADAMS, Mass. -- What boils down to an additional ten parking spaces, supporters say, would make the city’s downtown more attractive.
From Holden Street to a loading zone next to the Mohawk Theater, North Adams’ Public Safety Committee wants to get rid of side parking, changing to diagonal parking along Main Street.
"Customers, keep in mind, like convenience," says Keith Bona, city councilor. "They want to park right out in front of the store."
Which is one reason for the proposal.
The other, as demonstrated by Bona, "You can see behind me we have three lanes, which does allow for traffic to go a little faster than it should."
If approved, the city would employ a yearlong trial run, which would cancel parking meters during that period, a loss of $2,100 in revenue. However, city leaders say that will be made up within three years.
"It kills a couple birds with one stone," Bona said.
Opponents disagree, calling it a waste of money. As for adding spaces, they say the city has ample lots off Main Street.
"We need something beyond more than gimmicks."
The overarching gimmick, says former Mayor, now city councilor, John Barrett, is what he says diagonal parking won’t do for the city -- lure in visitors.
"If you’re going to rebuild the downtown whether it’s in Albany, New York, North Adams, or Pittsfield, it has to have a strong housing component. And it has to have a good theater district. And what we’re not seeing happening in the city," Barrett, who led North Adams for over 20 years, said.
Points to be argued next week when the city council votes on the measure.