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Traffic, parking called 'smooth'

December 02, 2002|by TARA REILLY

tarar@herald-mail.com

HAGERSTOWN - As shoppers took to the streets to hunt down sales Friday, some businesses made sure special parking measures were in place.

Police departments, meanwhile, reported no major traffic problems.

Prime Outlets of Hagerstown shuttled employees from the parking lot at South Hagerstown High School to free between 400 and 600 spaces for customers, Marketing Director Liza Gonzales said.

Gonzales said parking was tight at the shopping facility just off Interstate 70 and Sharpsburg Pike but traffic in and out was flowing smoothly.

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"It's pretty packed, but people are coming out despite the cold weather, so we're very happy," Gonzales said.

Valley Mall Marketing Director Julie Simmons said mall security personnel monitored the parking lot, which is normal procedure.

"We're always prepared for this day to come," Simmons said. "It's not anything special that they do."

Other than there being a lot of people, Simmons said there were no parking or traffic problems.

"It's been pretty smooth," she said. "Everything's fine."

Wal-Mart Supercenter Store Manager James Hornsby said store employees parked at the top of the parking lot near Garland Groh Boulevard so customers could park in spaces closer to stores.

He said the lot remained full and customers were parking anywhere they could find a spot, including in the lots of other businesses.

"It just wasn't enough," Hornsby said of the parking.

The Washington County Sheriff's Department and Maryland State Police in Hagerstown reported no major traffic problems as a result of the big shopping day in the afternoon.

The Hagerstown Police Department also said there were no problems in the afternoon, but said Black Friday-related calls for incidents such as shoplifting might pick up in the evening after people got off work.

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