Downtown Pembroke Looking For Parking That "Works For Everyone"


The group representing downtown Pembroke businesses is disappointed City Council shot down a suggestion to get rid of parking meters.

The Pembroke Business Improvement Area was hoping the reconstruction of Victoria Street could kickstart the removal of all meters - something, they note, that has been done in many other simliar-sized communities.

PBIA Manager Bethea Summers says they understand the need for parking revenue, but the thriving community in downtown Pembroke needs fewer obstacles to attracting and keeping customers.

"We're disappointed, but we understand the reasoning", Summers told Pure Country 96.7.

"We need parking that will work for customers, and business owners, and the City ... I think we're going to just keep looking at how other downtowns are dealing with parking, and see where we can improve, and maybe, try to find a best practice", Summers said.

She notes that they understand the importance of parking revenue to the city's economy as well.

"There is a revenue attached to having parking meters", she said, explaining that there is always a spirit of cooperation with City Hall in order to advance parking ideas.

The city brings in $48,000 a year from the meters, but more than $150,000 in total annual parking revenue, which also includes paid lots, parking permit fees, and fines.  

"Spirit Of Cooperation"

City Council settled on somewhat of a compromise with the PBIA on the parking meter suggestion.

At a recent meeting, Council agreed to launch a 2-hour "free parking" pilot project starting in November.

They'll track the results of it in the spring of 2020 to have some fresh data to work with.

"I do feel that Council sees the importance of looking at our parking situation, and looking at how we can get more shoppers downtown", Summers added.