The Duluth News Tribune reported on Monday that rates have changed at three parking lots in Canal Park. Two examples are the Northwest Iron lot (between Grandma’s Saloon and the DeWitt-Seitz Marketplace) and the Lighthouse lot (near the lighthouse pier). The minimum rate is now $3 for three hours, up from last year’s $2 for two hours.
The DNT notes:
Parking Operations Specialist Mark Bauer said the city decided to make the changes to streamline the parking process.
“Instead of trying to interpret and guess how much time you’re going to be there, we thought it would be easier to just simply pay for this three-hour block of time,” Bauer said. “It simply covers you up to that three-hour limit.”
There has been no word yet on whether hotels in the area will be streamlining their processes by invoking a three-night minimum stay or whether bars will enforce a three-drink minimum for customer convenience.
The cost of a ticket for an expired meter is also going up from $12 to $15.
Bauer said the increased cost of parking tickets is not meant to raise money for the city. Rather, he said, it is intended to encourage people to comply with parking laws, which he said are an important part of keeping local businesses healthy.
“Businesses … really rely on turnover of parking spaces,” Bauer said. “It’s an important element to be able to have people visit their businesses, to be able to come and go from businesses, rather than having someone who parks in the space and takes it all day long.”
So, to review: The parking-rate hike simplifies the process of holding a space longer, while the parking-ticket increase encourages the turnover of parking spaces.
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