NAPLES, Fla. - City leaders say there's major parking problems along 5th Avenue South. There are not enough available spaces. Parking is becoming such a hassle, Nicholas Ankrom who comes to the shopping mecca often says he's starting to put on the brakes and go somewhere else.
"You can't. It's way too crowded," said Ankrom. "There's too many people and there's not enough room."
Turning the spaces over is critical to keeping the local economy strong and local businesses profitable. A study conducted for the city in 2009 shows each parking spot can generate about $200,000 a year in retail sales. That's if the spots are turned over at least ten times a day. Now the city may eventually put a two-hour time restriction on some spaces.
"It would give more spots," says visitor Bob Simpkins who lives in Fort Myers. "Morre people would be moving out and others would be moving in."
But, Ankrom disagrees saying the free, unlimited parking adds to the city's charm. He says the city should build another parking garage instead.
"Everything needs to be much bigger," says Ankrom. "There needs to be more space."
Another concern is employee parking. Right now, the city of Coral Gables currently busses their employees in from a remote location. Naples leaders say that's something they'll be researching in the future. City Council members voted today to postpone any moves until the fall.