1 pointPersonally since pay parking came in the couple times I've needed to park in the area I've parked at the churches for free, once at the Methodist church once at St Paul's. I drove through last Friday and it seemed as busy as any Friday night; I think Dickson's a big enough draw on Fri/Sat nights that the parking fees won't matter during the high-demand times. On other days I can see it driving business down incrementally, though 50% seems like way too much. That reeks of a failing restaurateur or bar owner seeking to blame others. Certainly during weekdays mornings and afternoons the pay spaces and lots have looked sparsely populated. I would hope that adjustments will be made to rates over time. I've read that spaces should be priced so that there are always one or two spots free in the immediate area that you want to park; no spots means parking's too cheap, everything opens means too expensive. Re parking fees motivating people to drive to Benton county (or vice versa) to eat, I really do not see that happening much. I mean, I and most of my family and friends only drive up there to eat for special occasions. There's plenty of chains and indies elsewhere in Fayetteville (and Springdale) with acres of free parking if that's what you want. Really, how many people are there who are willing to drive an hour total to and from another area for a random weekday dinner? "I wonder what's causing the problem from the customer point of view" I think it comes down to the general area not being particularly urban/dense, thus most every parking lot being free, and thus people not being accustomed to paying for parking. Certainly applies to me...I've lived in FYV for eighteen years now and I'd guess that I've spent all of $10 or $20 on parking that entire time.
1 pointI certainly have to agree with you. With the way some people have reacted, you'd thought the city voted to start clubbing baby seals or something. Yeah I admit, I liked be able to park there for free in the past. But I also think this step is necessary. The fees don't seem that particularly high to me. Maybe it's just the type of society we live in now. People feel like 'something' has been taken from them and now they're determined to kvetch and moan about the whole thing. Not bothering to understand why it's being done. Or maybe they think the whole parking garage is just a scam, it's just a way for the city to 'stick it' to the people type of mentality. But to be honest I think some of the people doing a lot of the complaining are the ones who were basically just freeloading and using that as a nice easy convenient area to park just rarely frequenting the local shops and businesses on Dickson St. Although I imagine a number of them don't see it like that. I've been surprised to see people who feel entitled to things like that just because they purchased something once out of one of the stores 6 months ago. But yeah who I really do feel sorry for are the actually restaurants and shops in the area. It's not their fault yet in the end they may be the ones who end up having to deal with the consequences.