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Public meeting planned to discuss downtown parking

February 12, 2012|By C.J. LOVELACE | cj.lovelace@herald-mail.com

People interested in providing input or asking questions about findings of a downtown parking study will have a chance to do so when City of Hagerstown officials hold a public information meeting on Thursday, Feb. 23.

Representatives from Rich & Associates, the Michigan-based consulting firm the city chose to develop the parking study of the City Center area, will be on hand to discuss initial data.

The meeting will begin at 7 p.m. in the council chambers at City Hall.

As the first step toward developing a master plan for downtown parking, the city conducted an online survey in January to collect data from various types of users in and around the city’s center.

Eric Deike, director of the city’s Public Works Department, said the city received about 318 responses to the survey, which included a “good mix” of downtown business owners, employees, residents and visitors.

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“I don’t think there’s going to be any big surprises in this study,” Deike said. “I think there is going to be expectations based upon the study that for some people will not be met and for others will be met.

“I think some people are hoping that certain things come out of the study, whatever that is,” he said.

“Whether that’s a third parking deck or more parking, or whatever, I guess we’ll find out when the study is done.”

Deike said he believes the initial findings will not be “so eye-opening” and that things are “generally OK with parking.”

“There won’t be any big mysteries revealed here,” Deike said.

The consulting firm will develop the data into a master parking plan that would address current concerns, as well as future issues. The study will  include several recommendations to the mayor and city council that could be accepted or rejected.

Deike said he expects the final report to be completed by May.

All citizens will have the opportunity, and are encouraged, to give written and oral comments, according to a news release from the city. Individuals with questions regarding the meeting may call the city’s Public Works office at 301-739-8577, ext. 178.

If you go ...
What: Public information meeting on findings of a downtown parking study

When: Thursday, Feb. 23, 7 p.m.

Where: City Council chambers, second floor of City Hall, 1 E. Franklin St.

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