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Parking pilot program coming to Southtown

SAN ANTONIO – A new pilot parking program in the King William-Lavaca area could begin as early as June.

City officials, along with residents and business owners of the neighborhoods, met Thursday evening at the city’s Development Services Department to go over the latest parking proposal.

“One person likes it. One person doesn't. We have to find that common ground. We're going to do it,” said Jim Mery, deputy director of the Center City Development Office.

“We have a street that will go from two-hour parking, no parking, commercial loading and then open. It get's very confusing,” Lavaca resident Chris Turner said. “If you're not a resident, or come there frequently, you wouldn't know where to park. I think if the city cleans up the signage, stripes the road properly, I think it would help people understand.”

The current plan calls for residents to purchase a $10 permit for each vehicle, which allows them to park on certain sides of streets. Some streets would have only resident parking on one side, while others will have resident parking on one side and public parking on the other. Main thoroughfares, such as South Alamo and Presa, would have three-hour parking.

“Now, with these limitations, you need to find parking 10 blocks away. It's just not going to happen. It's more difficult to get them,” said chef Rene Fernandez, owner of Azuca on South Alamo, regarding parking for employees.

Many businesses sit along the corridors where the time limit parking would exist.

“I'm also very concerned the businesses will be affected. The reason why I live downtown is so I can walk to the businesses. I live downtown. I work downtown. I'm a walking commuter, or a biking commuter,” Turner said.

The city plans to continue to work with residents over the next 30 days before finalizing a plan to take before City Council. They hope to begin the yearlong pilot program in June.

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