San Marcos downtown businesses seek parking changes

The reverse, back-in parking in San Marcos has hurt some businesses bottom line, they say (KXAN Photo)
The reverse, back-in parking in San Marcos has hurt some businesses bottom line, they say (KXAN Photo)

SAN MARCOS, Texas (KXAN) — Since December, over 25 San Marcos businesses have organized to petition for back-in parking, one-way street changes to two-way and possible parking meters.

“I had one lady in a restaurant she wouldn’t let me go out the door. She goes, ‘That parking, you have to do something about that parking’. People are real annoyed about it,” Carol Powers says.

Powers is the owner of the gift shop called Paper Bear on LBJ in San Marcos. For 38 years her shop has lived on that street and in the past few years she says sales have dropped 20 percent since the implementation of back-in parking in 2013.

That is why she has joined over 25 other businesses downtown to put petitions in their shops for people to sign, fighting the city’s desire to add more back-in parking, convert LBJ and Guadalupe into two-way streets and possibly add parking meters.

The city was going to move forward with its recommendations for the Downtown Master plan after hosting a workshop last Fall, but after the workshop, Laurie Moyer with the city’s engineering department, says some city council members had concerns.

“We were getting ready to go to city council and say ‘We are ready to start this, are you ready to get going’. They wanted a discussion, that workshop, and other elements going before we moved forward,” said, Laurie Moyer, San Marcos Director of Engineering & Capital Improvements.

That is when the city of San Marcos released a survey asking for community input on downtown traffic and parking. Since then, several downtown businesses have held meetings discussing their concerns with one another and going door to door to hand out petitions.

The city was unaware that the petition existed but they are encouraging the feedback. The city of San Marcos says they will use the survey to help them reach a decision on possible downtown changes.

In March, the city’s engineering department will present their survey findings to the council at a workshop and move from there. That is also when the public has the opportunity to bring forth their petition.

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