Commission to consider proposed rates for downtown parking spaces

The Commons and the Bartholomew County Courthouse are reflected on a window of the old Colliers building on Washington Street in downtown Columbus, Ind., Tuesday, Feb. 13, 2018. Mike Wolanin | The Republic Mike Wolanin | The Republic

COLUMBUS, Ind. — A new set of proposed meter rates for downtown, if approved, would make long-term, on-street parking expensive for those who keep a space all day.

Three hours would cost $1 an hour, the fourth and fifth hours would be $5 each, and every hour after would be $10 meaning that someone who parks for nine hours would accumulate a charge of $53.

The Columbus Parking Commission plans to meet in mid-August and review a draft of parking recommendations for downtown Columbus, which includes proposed parking rates.

The meeting is tentatively scheduled at 2:15 p.m. Aug. 11 in Conference Room 3 of City Hall, but meeting dates are subject to change based on members’ availability. Other agenda items include a review of meter procurement guidance and a discussion of wayfinding.

The commission’s recommendations, once finalized, will be passed on to the Columbus Board of Works and Columbus City Council.

City Engineer/Executive Director of Public Works Dave Hayward, who is part of the parking commission, said that the draft recommendations come from what he heard and interpreted from the last meeting.

“So that was just trying to get a document in front of them that if they do want to make a motion, we’re already looking at the same thing,” he said. “There’s a good chance that I’ve missed the mark on one or two of those items in there and that would not surprise me a bit or disappoint me. But like I said, it was just a way to get everybody focused on ‘What are you really approving here?’”

The draft document recommends that pay stations should be installed in the following areas: Washington Street from Second to Seventh; Third Street from Jackson to Washington; Fourth Street from Jackson to Franklin; Fifth Street from Jackson to Franklin; Seventh Street from Washington to Franklin; Franklin Street from Third to Fourth (west side only); and Jackson Street from Second to Fourth (both sides) and Fourth to Fifth (east side only).

Additionally, the proposed meter rates are $1 per hour for the first three hours, $5 per hour for the fourth and fifth hour, and $10 per hour for hours six through nine. Recommended payment options include cash, credit and digital payment via an app. The suggested enforcement hours are weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For the complete story, see Wednesday’s Republic.