Parking meters coming to downtown Durham

DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) – Be prepared to pay to enjoy parts of Durham.

The Bull City is planning to add meters to downtown parking spots.

At Loaf, a downtown bakery, bread has been rising for more than five years.

Loaf Manager, Mary Turner, said, “most of our traffic live and work downtown.”

To help bring in more cars, city leaders are looking into paid parking in downtown.

“It is coming,” Parking Systems Manager Thomas Leathers said. “We’ve been engaged in this conversation since October of 2013.”

The discussion started after the city conducted a parking program evaluation.

“That we explore paid, on-street parking to be able to encourage more and higher vehicle turnover and utilization rates,” Leathers said.

Parking authorities said the plan is to have as many as 1,000 metered spots downtown.

“(There will be) a combination of single space and multi-space meters,” Leathers told CBS North Carolina. “Some of our block faces only have three parking spaces, so it’s not wise for us to make that investment for a multi-space meter.”

It will cost $1.50 for every hour you park.

Leathers said that price will help “to encourage shorter term parking on the on street spaces.”

He added, “then it will also encourage people who park for longer periods of time to utilize the parking facilities.”

Those added revenues expect to bring in $1.5 million in the first year.

Back at Loaf, bakers hope with more cars coming in out of each spot, it will mean more people walking into their store.

“If someone is already downtown, and they’ve paid for parking one street over, maybe they will walk over, rather than ‘my hour is already up. I’ve got to go,'” Turner said.

Metered parking could start as soon as November 1.

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