MANITOU SPRINGS — Manitou Springs city leaders are proposing a new Progressive Parking Rate Program, as they continue efforts to ease congestion and increase parking availability.
However it's causing some confusion for local residents and people looking to visit the area.
If approved, the new rates would go into effect this summer and apply to two downtown areas and the Barr Trail Head parking lot.
Downtown Zone 1
• 500-900 Manitou Ave.
• Canon Ave.
• 00 Ruxton Ave.
• Canon Lot
• Wichita Lot
• Smischny Lot
Downtown Zone 2
• 400 Manitou Ave.
• 400 El Paso Bl.
• Park Ave.
• 1000-1200 Manitou Ave.
• Hiawatha Lot
• Mansions Lot
There is no base pay for this summer yet, because data still needs to be collected from May 1st to August 31st to find a base.
From October 1st to April 30th, Monday through Thursday: zone one would cost a flat rate of $1.50 three hours, $2 an hour for hours three and four, $5 an hour for hours five and six, and $10 an hour an hour for seven or more hours.
Those prices are higher for Friday's, Saturday's, Sunday's, and holidays.
Some business owners say these rates are confusing and they also worry it's going to cause visitors to spend less time in the city, or not come at all.
"If you want to raise the rates, and we need to raise the rates then just raise them across the board. Don't even on season and off season, just have a set rate for parking," said Kathryn Kilner, the owner of Hemp Store
Zone two is a little simpler, with rates being year-round Sunday through Saturday, at the same price it costs Monday through Thursday in zone one. The rate change would impact the summer season as well, but not until next year.
All fees from the program would go to the city's parking enterprise fund.
The point is to encourage parking turnover, ease traffic congestion, and allow for more parking spaces to be available downtown.
Part of the program also impacts residents in Manitou Springs. That includes:
• 50 free credits of parking annually to be used at the resident's discretion
• Residents must follow the parking rules/policies for the areas they are parked
• Once the initial 50 credits have been used, regular rates apply
• December 31st at 11:59pm all hours expire (no refunds for unused credits)
The proposal will be voted on next Tuesday.
For more information about the proposed program, clickhere.