OSWEGO, NY – Several members of the business community urged the Common Council Tuesday night to aggressively address the dearth of parking space in and around the downtown area.
Tony Pauldine told councilors there are a lot of things happening in Oswego’s downtown. Many businesses now have residential spaces above them he added.
The recent downtown walking tour, sponsored by the Heritage Foundation, sold twice as many tickets then they have for any other tour, he pointed out.
“With all of these exciting things going on, more and more there seems to be a need for more parking and addressing the parking issue and looking forward into the future of how to address it and what to do for the benefit for the people of the city of Oswego as well as the shopkeepers,” he said.
Cora Brumley, a resident at the Browne-Davis building since 2007, echoed his concerns.
She thanked the council for what it has done to provide parking for tenants in the winter and encourage the council to continue working to increase the availability of downtown parking.
Nathan Emmons also addressed the parking issue.
He said one the reasons why he opened his business where he did was because of the parking spaces in front of his storefront.
However, the spaces are very small and congested. It has put a strain on his business, he added.
“I love the fact that Oswego is growing. But I agree, I think the parking issues in downtown need to be addressed for all of us,” he said.
Bill Reilly told the council “there is a huge need for increased parking downtown.”
There are opportunities for the city to expand its parking, he noted.
“There is a need for parking on Bridge Street, as we all know,” the long-time business owner said. “The challenge of parking on Bridge Street is the speed by which the traffic goes by. If we could calm the traffic in the heart of our downtown, I think it would serve us all well.”
Council President Ron Kaplewicz said, “We actually met, before we met here tonight, with downtown business owners and looked at the parking around the area. We looked at things and talked about what the opportunities are and shared visions and the mayor is going to put together a committee that is going to look at, with businesses and councilors, parking.”
There are several things they will be looking at in the coming weeks, he added.
“There’s a lot we can do to improve things if we just get together and do it,” he said.