Marissa Bagg reports
Will there be enough spaces?
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - As anticipation grows ahead of the Palm Beach Outlets grand opening, those who work and live near the mall are anxious to see how parking and traffic are impacted.
There are upwards of 2,400 parking spaces on mall property. But the mall general manager admits that may not be enough for opening weekend.
It's already a tight squeeze getting in and out of a nearby shopping plaza across Congress from Palm Beach Outlets. Drivers say it's hard to find a space every day.
"A lot of cars an you have to park on the side like I am now because theres no parking," said one driver.
FLA Cleaners owner Ismael Rodriguez says with the mall opening Friday, it may get worse before it gets better.
"At first it will be a little hectic, like anything, but after a little bit it should die down," said Rodriguez.
Mall administrators say it's difficult to accommodate parking for the crowd on any opening weekend. The search for a spot may spill outside mall property.
"Chaotic, very chaotic. I thought that was a parking space, but it wasn't. He beat me so I moved my car," said Destiny Atwaters.
Rodriguez admits shoppers may hunt for spots in his lot and then walk over to the mall. He says he has a plan for that.
"I've got a towing company, I'm not worried at all, I have a big truck. Where are they going to park, it's full already," said Rodriguez.
Mall administrators are asking for everyone to have patience this weekend. When construction wraps up in the fall, there will be about 4,000 spots available.
Traffic engineers with Palm Beach County will be monitoring the intersections for the next four days, lengthening green lights if needed to ease congestion.
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PHOTOS: Palm Beach Outlets construction from Chopper 5