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City Market finalizes paid parking policy

Posted at 4:59 PM, Jan 30, 2018
and last updated 2018-01-30 18:53:55-05

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Customers will have to get used to a new paid parking policy at the City Market starting March 1. 

Management met with tenants on Tuesday to announce it and explain details. 

The parking lots surrounding the City Market will cost $1 an hour to park. Three tickets means your car gets towed. 

The City Market square will be free for two hours, bumped down from three. 

The policy was put in place to push out all-day parkers who take up spaces in City Market lots and take the streetcar up to their downtown jobs, essentially leaving scarce parking for customers.

"The second proposal looks way better than the first one and I'm happy with it," said Carlos Mortera, who owns The Bite restaurant in the square. 

The first draft City Market management announced in early January wanted to charge people $3 for three hours, and $1 every hour after in all the lots.  

Tenants showed up frustrated and concerned to an early January meeting, arguing it would penalize their customers. 

Now, most tenants feel the second draft is a good compromise. 

"They're able to get in and out, especially here at the bakery, they just want to come in and grab a cup of coffee or croissants in the morning," said Sarah Darby, who owns Bloom Bakery Co. in the square. 

City Market employees will get a hang-tag to park free. 

But River Market businesses will have to pay to park, although many use City Market lots. 

"I should be given the same free parking as the City Market," said Sue Burke, whose business, Kansas City Air Filter, sits across from the Steamboat Arabia Museum on Grand Street. 

Burke doesn't have her own lot.  Her employees would pay $55 a month to park, according to the policy, but Burke said that's too expensive. 

She says she might just pack up and leave to a different location. 

"I feel like I am being forced to move. This is $20,0000 a year to the Kansas City, Missouri economy that's going to go away permanently," Burke said. 

Parking remains free on the weekends.