The city of Sarasota removed plans to eliminate 10 parallel parking spaces along the westbound side of John Ringling Boulevard on St. Armands Circle after hearing concerns Thursday from the St. Armands LMR (landowners, merchants, residents) Committee.
“The way the economy has been, this is not the time to eliminate parking spaces,” said Diana Corrigan, executive director of the St. Armands Circle Association.
Corrigan said the revised plans would allow the city, along with St. Armands residents and merchants to see if other updates, such as the elimination of pedestrian stop signs, are effective in alleviating traffic before removing parking spaces. According to retail studies, each parking space located directly on the Circle generates between $225,000 and $250,000 in annual retail revenue.
Removal of the parking spaces was suggested at the Sarasota-Manatee Metropolitan Planning Organization St. Armands work session Oct. 18 because residents and officials noted traffic often becomes jammed while drivers wait for parking spaces. The group that attended that meeting suggested removing the parallel spaces on the street while keeping the angled spaces on the opposite side of the street to form a passing lane.
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