Waterfront Park officials push for parking fee

Waterfront Park officials push for parking fee
(Source: WAVE 3 News)

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - At least one Louisville Metro Council member is fighting back against the idea of paying to park at Waterfront Park.

Currently, parking is free in a majority of the park's lots. But the Waterfront Development Corporation, which runs the park, is planning to vote on whether to change that.

They want to charge $3 to $5 for parking. The lot in front of Joe's Crab Shack does charge $3 currently.

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Councilman Bill Hollander says the cost would change what makes the park special.

"Yeah it was a shock. It was a surprise," he said. "It's very diverse racially, economically. There are people here for whom $3 a day is going to be a huge imposition."

The park needs the money to make up for the state no longer contributing financially. The city makes up a large part of the park's funding, but doesn't control the management.

Hollander said he's upset because the city already gave the park $210,000 on June 22 to keep it from charging for parking.

"Even if you think it's a good idea, what happened to the $210,000 that we moved?" he asked.

Parking would be free Monday and Tuesday, but Hollander calls that limiting. He said he's spoken with other council members who agree.

Still, while the council controls funding, they do not control the final decision on the parking fee.

"We should be encouraging people to use our parks to get healthier, not discouraging them," Hollander said. "I think a parking charge for general parking does [discourage people]."

A vote on that fee is expected August 23.

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