December 7, 2017




Poughkeepsie studies parking opportunities

Map shows area included in study

POUGHKEEPSIE – The City of Poughkeepsie is in the early stages of an in-depth parking study entirely paid for by a $154,000 grant from the Federal Highway Administration and administered by the Dutchess County Transportation Council (DCTC).

Mayor Robert Rolison approached the DCTC in 2016 to request the funding because "parking is one of the most important aspects of downtown accessibility.” He said they want to enhance the economic vitality of the city and “parking, along with all its components are an essential part of that."

The study is expected to produce a valid final plan in the spring of 2018. The goals include a determination of parking needs and the feasibility of consolidated parking among others. Rolison also seeks to develop strategies to improve the maintenance and management of parking areas under the city's control. 

Paul Hesse, the Community Development coordinator for the city, said the study will help identify opportunities to free up spaces through consolidation in hopes that new areas could end up being developed.

“We want to have an efficiently operated program for downtown that is business supportive, that’s user friendly and potentially that makes more efficient use of space and optimizes the use of our existing space that we might be able to free up publicly owned space for redevelopment,” Hesse said.

The study is focusing on the downtown area west of Clinton Street and the surrounding neighborhoods to the west of Columbus Drive and north of Mill Street which is roughly one-third of a square mile.

The plan is not embraced by Councilman Christopher Petsas. "We have greater issues to tackle in this city such as cleaner streets, safer neighborhoods, a $12 million deficit, and a dysfunctional city hall,” he said.

Steve Hendrickson, who has lived in the city for nearly 30 years said "if the city is looking to raise revenue, meters should be installed along Rinaldi Boulevard."

Anthony Jolly, owner of The Derby Bar and Restaurant at 96 Main Street isn't directly impacted by the parking shortage because he has a private lot but acknowledged that his fellow members of the River District Business Association would benefit from increased or improved parking availability.


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