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City Officials Not Using Informative Parking Source

If Mayor Edward Sundquist and the Jamestown City Council are serious about fixing parking downtown, they have an unused asset in Pete Miraglia.

Miraglia, a former board member of the Jamestown Renaissance Corporation and a longtime downtown business owner, presented a report to the council on downtown parking. Between May and August 2015, Miraglia conducted 17 surveys of on-street parking, surface lots and the three downtown parking ramps.

In other words, other than parking enforcement officers, there aren’t many people who know more about parking downtown than Miraglia.

“In the almost 20 years that I have been actively involved downtown, I have felt that the parking system has been downtown’s greatest impediment to growth,” Miraglia said recently to The Post-Journal. “When I visit very active and successful downtowns like Saratoga Springs, and Owego, who offer free on and off street parking, I wonder why Jamestown continues to make coming to downtown so challenging.”

Council members were right to hold off on proposed parking fee increases and changes to the 150 free parking spaces downtown as part of the 2021 budget. Sundquist wants to new app-based payment system that will be available once smart parking meters are installed.

This is a good time to look at all of the parking downtown and to devise and implement a strategy that works for everyone. If the city is smart, it will engage Miraglia and his expertise, as well as a mix of downtown business owners.

Discussions over parking have been ongoing in Jamestown for far too long. Rather than tinker around the edges it is time for the city to deal with the problem head-on, once and for all.

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