The downtown Casper parking ban will not be discussed in a formal City Council meeting any time soon.
Instead, the Casper City Council decided in Thursday’s work session to wait until road construction on David Street is completed later this year. Those improvements are supposed to provide more parking spots for residents of the David Street Apartments, who have complained repeatedly about the ban.
Approved by the City Council in August, the ban means vehicles can no longer be parked on the street between 3 and 6 a.m. between Durbin Street and David Street north of Midwest Avenue and south of sections of A and E streets.
Councilwoman Kim Holloway proposed giving special parking permits to exempt downtown residents most adversely affected by the ban. Only Councilman Keith Goodenough expressed support for the idea.
“I like that idea, but I’d like to expand it to (all) downtown residents,” he said.
Special permits had been discussed by the Downtown Development Authority, according to Peggy Brooker, that group’s chairwoman, but the group could not reach a consensus on the idea. The DDA, a group representing property owners, was tasked by the council with finding a solution for disgruntled residents. It rejected most of residents’ recommendations concerning the ban and has expressed concern primarily about street cleaning, snow-clearing and having enough parking for downtown businesses.
Councilwoman Stephanie Boster said she disagreed with the idea of allowing the residents of the David Street apartment building to have special parking permits that would exempt them from restrictions.
In an informal vote, the council rejected Holloway’s idea.
After the meeting, Boster said she was willing to consider shrinking the footprint of the ban area to exclude David Street. The idea of shrinking the footprint came originally from a downtown resident and was one of those rejected by the DDA.
The ban was passed in response to complaints by merchants that vehicles left overnight were creating a nuisance for morning customers of area businesses.
Residents have complained that the ban covers more territory than necessary, favors businesses over residents and adds the cost of finding rental parking from a private lot to the cost of living downtown.
Reach reporter Joe O’Sullivan at 307-266-0639 or email@example.com.