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Merchants and shoppers have approached the Mayor’s Office, Athens City Council and Athens Police seeking a solution to increased parking in Downtown Athens, particularly around The Square and the immediate side streets. Some merchants have reported a decrease in sales because parking spaces in front of their stores remain occupied throughout the day.
After meeting with merchants and Athens Main Street, and discussing the issue with city staff and county officials, the City will take the following steps as of April 3, 2017, to address the issue:
It will take Public Works about a month to create and install new “3-hour parking” signs to replace the 2-hour signs. During the interim, Athens Police will enforce the 3-hour parking limit even though current signage indicates 2-hour parking. In addition, it will take Public Works about a month to create and install the no overnight parking signs. Athens Police will wait to enforce that once signs are installed. Please note this is only for city parking lots and parking spaces.
The Mayor’s Office and Police Department will monitor how these actions impact all-day parking concerns. The City will work with the Courthouse regarding parking passes for jurors and judges. In addition, merchants can contact Athens Police at 256-233-8700 if a parking pass is needed for a business owner or business employee to park a vehicle overnight. Restaurants that serve alcohol can also call Athens Police to report an impaired driver who needs to leave his or her vehicle parked overnight. The Mayor’s Office and Police Department are exploring other avenues to address all-day parking, but these ideas need further discussion.
William R. “Ronnie” Marks Floyd Johnson
Mayor, City of Athens Chief, Athens Police Department