Searching aimlessly for a parking space in Eugene is a major problem for people who need to get somewhere at a certain time. Turns out, the downtown area is a hotspot for parking.
Whether its someone who works in a shop downtown or someone who just wants to get a bite to eat, parking is an issue that continues to frustrate locals. During business hours, streets downtown are constantly busy with people searching for available spots, some having to drive around the block multiple times because parking is so limited. Parking, according to almost any downtown business employee you speak to, is a major complication.
An employee at Integrity Auto Repair located on W 7th Ave. downtown said that he has trouble almost every morning trying to find parking. He has to leave a lot earlier for work because not only is there traffic at all times but metered parking spaces are always taken plus parking lots are small. He doesn’t like parking garages because the one located downtown is a far walk from the shop so he would rather drive around until he finds an open meter.
The whole concept of timed, metered parking is to turnover parking spaces to other people. On street parking is not meant for all day use so meters are utilized as something that allows parking availability. One frequent downtown visitor, Kayla McLaughlin, is a student at the University of Oregon who likes to dine with her friends downtown during the week. “I hate parking. You would think that because of the parking meters, spaces turn over a few times a day and give people a chance to find a spot, but that isn’t the case,” she said. Kayla owns a bike and sometimes would much rather bike downtown than drive because it is much easier to find a bike space than a place for a vehicle.
James Griswold graduated from University of Oregon last year and currently lives in Portland, but he makes many trips to Eugene on the weekends. He goes downtown often for the good food and shops. Griswold also gets frustrated when he can’t find a place to park his car. “The parking zones should be larger to increase parking availability,” he said.
The Eugene downtown area has parking shortages that don’t make many people happy. Frequent visitors to the downtown area agree that parking will continue to be a concern.