Salisbury City Council approves Parking Pilot Program for downtown

Published 12:05 am Thursday, November 17, 2022

SALISBURY — The Salisbury City Council approved the Downtown Parking Pilot Program, where the city will lease out parking spots around the downtown area to residents for a fee. The 30 spots available in the inaugural round will be located in the Wells Fargo lot, the city office building lot and the central city lot.

Leasing will start on Dec. 14. It will be on a first come, first served basis and the lease will be for one year, from Jan. 1-Dec. 31, 2023. Proof of downtown residency, property ownership or employment is required to lease a parking space. The permit will not be parking space specific, but will be parking lot specific.

“With the rapid development that we have, the increase to residential, but also the increase in commercial business that we have and property development, it really just became the right time to look for different options. We just need to make sure as we bring in diverse uses in our downtown we have diverse parking options,” Downtown Development Director Sada Troutman said.

Spaces will cost $35 a month or $420 for a whole year.

“The vision for this program is to have it upfront. If someone sees a change in circumstances where they’re no longer using the parking space, we’ll of course look to be able to fill that parking space so they can get a refund for that,” Troutman confirmed.

Now that they have been given approval, Troutman says Downtown Salisbury will work to make sure the community is aware of the program.

“Our next steps are to really make sure the implementation goes smoothly. So we’re going to be ordering signs, placards, all the necessary signage and information. We’ll be working with communications to develop a plan so the information gets out there appropriately, so people will have the opportunity to sign up.”

The goal is to expand the amount of spaces in the future if this becomes successful. How many people sign up for the spaces will determine if the program continues.

“One of the biggest metrics that we’re going to be using is demand. How many people are requesting these parking spaces? Are the 30 spaces filled? How are those spaces used? Not only that someone’s paying for them, but is someone using them as well and using it appropriately,” Troutman said.

Salisbury City Manager Jim Greene hopes the program will go beyond next year and that it will help the city besides giving residents a few extra parking spaces.

“It allows us to evaluate some other issues. We want to make sure our parking lots are safe and that there is plenty of lighting. We can evaluate the times of our lots. Some are all day parking, some are 2 hour limits. Thirdly, it allows us to continue to get input from the property owner, businesses, and residents downtown about what they think about parking,” Greene said.

Troutman gives her presentation to the Salisbury City Council.