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The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

home : latest news : local April 29, 2016


3/30/2013 1:35:00 PM
Old Town Parking in the fast lane

Jon Hutchinson
Staff Reporter


The Cottonwood City Council held a rare Thursday night work session in its newly remodeled council chambers to make sure that every one was on the same page for improvements to the northernmost parking planned near the Old Town Jail.

In addition to council and staff, the gathering drew area businessmen as well as a leader of the environmental community.

There is clearly an interest in parking as many vehicles as possible on land that formerly held a mountain of debris at Gardner Recycling. There is a suggestion that the area needs a public restroom. There is also a call for more greenery among the pavement and there is also a need to highlight the jail trail as access to the Verde River.

City Manager Doug Bartosh said an intergovernmental agreement with the State Parks Department, which owns what will become a 'driveway' access to the Jail Trail, demands that the city promote the trail as part of the agreement.

A proposal for an information kiosk suggested it should be near the trailhead as part of the way to draw in visitors.

Eric Jurisin, who is building the Bocce Pizza restaurant across the street, told the council that he walks the Jail Trail "every single morning." He said, "Really, the park begins after the gate," he said. "You have a lot of park there that is not getting credit. The key is good signage." But, he cautioned, "We have a transient problem."

It was Vice Mayor Karen Pfeifer who brought attention to the need for rest rooms.

At that, Development Services Manager Dan Lueder warned of the cost. "We have estimated a cost of $200,000 already for the 12th Street Park.

Bob Rothrock, speaking for the Friends of the Verde River Greenway, supported the concept of getting people in touch with the river and emphasizing the Old Town Trail. He said he is also in favor of public restrooms in the area.

"With the number of businesses selling drinks in the area," people are going to want to walk among the trees to discharge some of that fluid, said Rothrock.

When a walkway was suggested where the plan called for motorcycle parking, Mitch Levy of Burning Tree Cellars suggested the city could put the motorcycle parking in front of his operation.

Expect to even see a hitching post emerge from improvements after the observation was raised that Old Town businessmen are seeing more horse traffic from the concession at Dead Horse Ranch.

Finally, an arched gateway drawing was show, using river rock for supports that would span the walk way to the jail trail.

Jurisin believes that the arch should be near Main Street in order to catch travelers who have ridden Clarkdale's Verde River Train.

Asked how soon the project could be finished, Dan Lueder speculated it could be out to on-call contractors next week, with the bids back to the council April 16th and completed in June, as a best-case scenario.


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Reader Comments

Posted: Tuesday, April 2, 2013
Article comment by: Missing Logic

You seem to have a double standard in your logic. I, like most consumers, do business where needed, not in relation to where my car is parked. If I need my clock fixed and the only parking is two blocks away, I walk. Most of Old Town appeals to our out of town visitors who, I dare presume, would still walk the other side of the street, just as they do now. With your logic the city should not invest in any further parking in old town as only those merchants in the near vicinity will benefit. That doesn't make sense any more than your argument.

Posted: Tuesday, April 2, 2013
Article comment by: Missing Logic

You seem to have a double standard in your logic. I, like most consumers, do business where needed, not in relation to where my car is parked. If I need my clock fixed and the only parking is two blocks away, I walk. Most of Old Town appeals to our out of town visitors who, I dare presume, would still walk the other side of the street, just as they do now. With your logic the city should not invest in any further parking in old town as only those merchants in the near vicinity will benefit. That doesn't make sense any more than your argument.

Posted: Tuesday, April 2, 2013
Article comment by: bonus parking is real... .

Rather than attack logic look to human nature. It lacks logic and is subject to free will. If you stack all the parking on one side of the street folks will take the path of least resistance, it is a known fact.

Please feel free to go and ask what business would rather not have the parking closer to their location. The results might surprise you.

The concept has been looked at in the past and is not a new idea. Perhaps the city could explain it better that the comments section of the paper...


Posted: Monday, April 1, 2013
Article comment by: Bonus Parking?

I wasn't aware of the term bonus parking. You imply we only do business with merchants on the side of the street where we are parked. I guess we are wasting paint spraying cross walks, since we don't cross over from where we parked. In fact the concept of further city parking lots should seem ludicrous to you since it could be both further down the road and on the wrong side of the road. Your thinking lacks any logic.

Posted: Monday, April 1, 2013
Article comment by: So which side gets the bonus parking? .

East or West? So when folks park on the side with all the parking.. .that side will get more business because folks don't have to cross the street.

Several concepts have been looked at over the years and they all have their good and bad points. the angled parking does not net as much as you might think- and presents a more dangerous issue when backing into traffic rather than paralleling it.

perhaps the city staff could answer your query better than the comments section of the paper. Please let us know what you find.



Posted: Monday, April 1, 2013
Article comment by: Alan Evans

Best idea I've heard of in a long time. How many times has someone waited for a car to try and parallel park in old town? Easier parking would create less congestion and risk of accident.

Posted: Monday, April 1, 2013
Article comment by: Ron Gladden

Why not increase parking spaces and the ease of parking by dedicating one side of Main Street in old town to diagonal parking? You would get more parking spaces than we currently have and it would be easier to drive in and pull out. By simply shifting the lanes to one side, this could be accomplished. It is a proven concept used for years in many older down town areas such as ours.



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