I am going to sponsor the order Monday night which will bring the question of choosing one of the sites before the Council.
I've done some random sample surveying of Ward 4 constituents on a range of issues including downtown, parking, and waterfront. I emailed 97 constituents a survey and received 52 responses. Take it for what it's worth. Here's what I'm finding:
Regarding the future of the waterfront parking lots owned by the Newburyport Redevelopment Authority (NRA), do you favor keeping the area as parking, converting the area to park, or are you undecided?
Keep space as parking 32.7%
Convert space to park 57.1%
Mayor Holaday has proposed a system of paid parking for City owned parking lots located on the Waterfront and on Green Street as a way to generate revenue for the City and to better manage parking supply. Opponents say paid parking will have a negative impact on residents and the downtown. Do you favor the creation of a paid parking system for Newburyport?
For many years, the City has debated whether to have a parking garage downtown. Seven years ago the City Council--by one vote-- voted down a proposal to purchase property on Titcomb Street for a municipal garage. Under Mayors Moak and Holaday, a planning group has been looking at possible locations for a downtown garage. Proponents of a garage say that the additional parking is needed to replace the waterfront parking and to anticipate future needs. Opponents say a large parking structure is not needed and would be inappropriate for Newburyport. Do you believe a downtown parking garage is needed?