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Delray to add 350 parking spots to downtown on nights and weekends

Requires downtown employees to park at courthouse
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Posted at 7:21 PM, Jul 04, 2016
and last updated 2016-07-06 00:04:41-04

UPDATE:  Commissioners voted Tuesday to add 350 extra parking spaces on nights and weekends. Under the new plan, employees of downtown businesses would be asked to park in the South County  courthouse parking garage, instead of downtown streets. 

EARLIER STORY: 

Next time you go to Delray Beach, it could be easier to find a downtown parking space- at least that's if a new plan gets the go ahead from the city commission.

Leaders will revisit a plan to add 350 extra parking spaces in downtown Delray Beach on nights and weekends.

Currently, no one is allowed to park in the South County courthouse garage, west of downtown, after the courthouse closes or on weekends. Under this new plan, employees of downtown businesses would be asked to park in the courthouse garage, instead of on downtown streets and lots.  

The city said that could free up more than 300 spaces in the heart of downtown.  

Some people, like Chase Axton said that would encourage more people to come to the downtown area to shop and dine.

“Especially on the weekends, it's impossible to get down here. If you're not taking an Uber, or taking a taxi, you might as well not even come,” Axton said.

But some downtown employees don't love the new parking idea.

Kaitlin Gauthier worries about walking several blocks to her car late at night. She works at Sloan’s Ice Cream which is open until midnight on weekends.

“It’s something to change up the way things are, but it does make the lives of the employees a little more complicated,” she explained.

Businesses would have to pay $20 per month for each parking spot they use in the garage. The city said that will pay for security and insurance.

The proposal was first pitched in December, but the city commission did not take any action on it. Leaders will discuss the proposal at their meeting tomorrow. It takes place at 6 p.m. at City Hall. 

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