#downtownshowdown: As Floyd Schools lease deck to ease some graduation parking headaches, city rolls out new lease/permitting system for existing, new customers.

#downtownshowdown: As Floyd Schools lease deck to ease some graduation parking headaches, city rolls out new lease/permitting system for existing, new customers.

TODAY’S PARKING HEADLINES

  • Floyd County Schools leasing Third Avenue deck.  ‘We believe a graduation ceremony is a joyous occasion.’
  • More changes to downtown parking regarding permits, scanners and leasing.
  • No implementation delays on new parking enforcement as of this morning.
  • Questions about downtown Rome parking: We’ve received several emails and texts about parking in downtown Rome in light of the new enforcement times and the use of the License Plate Reading car vs. now-in-use permits. We’ll submit those questions and any you have on parking downtown to the parking office and city administration in search of answers. Please send to druck@hometownheadlines.com.
  • #downtownshowdown from a reader suggestion (thanks, Frank).

EVEN MORE PARKING CHANGES: The changes in parking in downtown Rome go beyond the current firestorm of the apparent money grab associated with extending parking enforcement hours on the eve of the second busiest time of the year — high school graduations.

Those leasing spaces in parking decks and lots face major changes come Monday, including current permit holders parking in law enforcement and other decks. Starting May 20, those familiar tags dangling in permitted vehicles are out with the new license permit reader mobile now repeatedly scanning the decks and lots to ensure permitted users only — and ticket any other vehicle.

A new Facebook video has been posted (see above) that explains the changes, the new LPR mobile and how you can lease parking spaces. Also covered: How to correctly park in the decks. Those who back in, either by habit or in an attempt to mask their license plates, are subject to enforcement.

The scanner is part of the newly purchased vehicle as see to the right. Additional questions: Contact the Office of Downtown Development at 706-236-4520 Monday-Friday from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.


FLOYD SCHOOLS LEASE DECK: ‘We believe a graduation ceremony is a joyous occasion.’

The Third Avenue deck has been reserved for four county high school graduations on Friday evening, May 24, and Saturday, May 25, by Floyd County Schools. The decision announced Wednesday afternoon eases some of the pressure facing the families and friends of graduating seniors following the city of Rome’s decision to expand downtown parking restrictions starting Monday, May 20, just days before graduation weekend.

Usually a $600 deal, the reserving of the deck has been done by other groups hosting special events at the Forum River Center. The decision comes as two business owners (and later a third) inquired about leasing the deck to chill part of the tensions raised by the city decision to arbitrarily start 8 a.m. until 8 p.m. parking enforcement Monday through Saturday (6 p.m. had been the cutoff period).

We’re expecting another update or two regarding graduation parking soon.

From Floyd County schools: 

“We believe a graduation ceremony is a joyous occasion where families can come together to celebrate the bittersweet closing of one chapter and the exciting start to a new one for students they love. Floyd County Schools has reserved the Third Avenue Parking Deck in Downtown Rome for Armuchee High, Coosa High, Model High and Pepperell High graduates and their families to use free of charge during the graduation ceremonies Friday, May 24, and Saturday, May 25. Between each graduation ceremony, the deck will be completely cleared out to make room for the next group. We appreciate your cooperation and understanding in helping us do this quickly and efficiently for all to have the opportunity to enjoy the graduation ceremony they are attending.  Thank you!”

Reaction to the move:

From School Board member Chip Hood: “Thanks to our other board members and administration, FCS is trying to do our part to help with parking in downtown Rome on Friday and Saturday for graduation.”

From School Board member Jay Shell: “Hey, Floyd County graduates and families! FREE PARKING!! I’m super proud that our city of Rome parking department could work a deal with our school system. Parking will be FREE for all four graduations next weekend. Please clear the deck on Saturday after your graduation. I think this deal cost the school system $600. So again – thanks to the city of Rome parking for working with us and putting #KidsFirst.”

Social media: In six hours, the school system’s Facebook post received nearly 225 “likes” and 37 comments. It also was shared nearly 125 times. Click Facebook

Downtown graduations:

2019 graduation schedule in downtown Rome:

  • Model High School: Graduation: Friday, May 24 at 7 p.m. at Forum River Center.
  • Rome High School: Graduation: Saturday, May 25 at 8:45 a.m. at Barron Stadium.
  • Coosa High School: Graduation: Saturday, May 25 at 10 a.m. at Forum River Center.
  • Pepperell High School: Graduation: Saturday, May 25 at 2 p.m at Forum River Center.
  • Armuchee High School: Graduation: Saturday, May 25 at 6 p.m. at Forum River Center.

NO CHANGES IN PARKING ENFORCEMENT:

City leaders on Tuesday said there would be no changes in starting expanded parking enforcement hours this coming Monday and, as of this morning, we’re aware of no updates.

Instead, a backlash continues to grow as upset parents and customers announce plans to take their business off Broad Street in response to the changes (while also citing the smoking ban). Likewise, with six city commissioners up for re-election in November, Rome leaders are being questioned about the timing of the enforcement so close to graduation weekend.

Who to call:  We’ve been asked to supply the contact information for those responsible for the May 20 (this coming Monday) rollout decision. The best answer: City commissioners. Below please find the email addresses of each:

We invite you to CC us as well at druck@hometownheadlines.com

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