UPDATE: Tyler council approves revised parking fees

Published on Wednesday, 25 June 2014 11:26 - Written by

UPDATE: Tyler City Council approved the revised fees for parking meters and the new Fair Plaza parking garage outlined in the story below.

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By KELLY GOOCH, kgooch@tylerpaper.com

Drivers could notice revised fees for some parking meters if the Tyler City Council approves an ordinance during its Wednesday meeting.

The ordinance would update fees for certain parking meters, add Good Friday as an exception to the parking meter fees and put parking rates in place for the downtown Fair Plaza Parking Garage.

The meeting is scheduled for 9 a.m. at City Hall, 212 N. Bonner Ave.

Tyler City Manager Mark McDaniel said this is an effort to establish the rates for the parking garage and examine on-street parking to ensure that it works complimentary with the garage.

Under the proposed ordinance, the fee for street parking meters would remain 25 cents per hour with a two-hour maximum limit for most parking meters, while the fee would be 50 cents per hour with a two-hour maximum limit for street parking meters in these locations: Spring Avenue from Ferguson Street to Elm Street; Broadway Avenue from Ferguson Street to University Place; College Avenue from Ferguson Street to Elm Street; Ferguson Street from College Avenue to Spring Avenue; and Erwin Street from Bois D’Arc Avenue to Fannin Avenue, according to city council communication.

According to city council communication, current exceptions to parking meter fees for individuals with disabilities and veterans with disabilities would remain the same under the proposed ordinance, as would exceptions to parking meter fees for Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. The proposed ordinance does add a new exception for Good Friday.

Additionally, according to city council communication, the proposed ordinance does not impact designated parking areas that don’t involve meters, such as law enforcement, loading zones, fire lanes, etc.

McDaniel said an analysis was done on the parking garage project, and a higher rate increase was suggested for parking meters than what is being proposed. However, he said, the city wanted to break even and improve equipment, so it is in the process of purchasing new meters that will take credit cards.

The revised fees for certain parking meters would likely take effect when the new meters come in, he said. However, he noted that the city council would have to approve the proposed ordinance to get the meters.

Aside from revised parking meter rates and the Good Friday exception, the proposed ordinance also addresses parking rates for the downtown Fair Plaza Parking Garage.

“The city of Tyler has constructed the downtown Fair Plaza parking garage for the convenience and safety of citizens visiting downtown locations,” the city council communication reads. “It is important to establish parking rates for the new parking garage.”

According to city council communication, the proposed fees are $1 per hour with a maximum daily rate of $5. There would be an exception to parking garage fees for those with disabilities and veterans with disabilities.

Under the proposed ordinance, individuals would have the option of paying a monthly fee of $70 per parking space per month in the parking garage via a monthly lease agreement through the City Traffic Engineering Department, according to city council communication.

Although $70 is a base fee, people would be able to negotiate for a better rate if they are renting multiple spaces in the parking garage or are a tenant in the adjacent Fair Foundation Building, McDaniel said.

He said the proposed fee for a lost parking garage ticket is $8.

The parking garage will have a booth attendant from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. every day except Saturdays, Sundays and the holidays that the city council decides on, according to city council communication.

An exception to the parking garage fees would be made for evenings, holidays and weekends, similar to the parking meter fees, McDaniel said.

He said the city council is being asked to make the parking garage fees effective on Sept. 1. The hope is for the parking garage to be done by the end of July, he said, so people would have time to get used to parking there before rates apply.