Mayor Rob Dolan has announced the next phase in the City’s comprehensive plan to improve downtown parking with a proposal that directs employees to park in designated areas, leaving the spaces closest to businesses available for customers. The measure was passed recently by both the Board of Aldermen and the Traffic Commission. “I believe this proposal is a major benefit for both businesses and customers. By ensuring the closest parking spots in our municipal parking lots are being utilized by customers, it will absolutely have a positive effect on an already thriving downtown,” said Dolan.
The new employee parking program would do the following:
- Allow employees to park in certain designated locations at no cost
- Sticker based permit; employee must present proof of employment
- New signage would be installed that designates 170 spaces for employees
- Berwick Street: 50 spaces
- City Hall: 60 spaces
- Friend’s Court (behind Papa Gino’s): 16 spaces
- Larrabee Lot (behind Giacomo’s): 34 spaces
- Livermore Lot (Caruso Block): 10 spaces
For businesses that need to be able to park in close proximity to their front door, an alternative parking pass that will allow employees to park in any lot at any time would be sold at a cost of $600 a year and capped at 35 permits.
In 2012, the City completed a Parking Study of downtown and adjacent parking lots. The study concluded that downtown Melrose has an ample supply of parking, but that the management of available public parking should be adjusted to ensure availability for customers. Since that time the City has implemented several measures to improve the situation, including: Changing parking limits from two to three hours to encourage shoppers downtown, eliminating inconsistent signage, improving signage, and the purchase of 1 Kimball Court to create 25 new parking spots.
“I also want to thank the Parking Working Group that was created as part of this process. Their experience and expertise helped guide the City get to where this initiative is today,” added Dolan. Members of the Parking Work Group included:
- Alison Socha, Re/Max
- Joan Cassidy, Melrose Redevelopment Authority
- Joan Ford Mongeau, Chamber of Commerce (past ED)
- Chris Cinella, Edward Jones
- Joe Turner, Turner’s
- Kevin DeVinney, Eastern Bank
- Steve Trulli, Whittemore Hardware
- Representatives from DPW, Police Department, Mayor’s Office, and Office of Planning and Community Development