Feeding the meter

Apr 16, 2013


My topic this week is the possibility of parking meters returning to downtown.

The meters may be a good revenue source for the city but at what price will the businesses have to pay if they are installed? It is a shame that the city might be entertaining thoughts of bringing the meters back after not having very much success with them in the past.

Some companies may install the meters, maintain them, and collect the revenue for the city for a certain percentage of the revenue. In addition, the city would have to employ an officer to monitor and cite the people for overdue meters. After paying out the company’s percentage and obtaining an officer to monitor the meters, what will be left of any kind of revenue for the city? If the city does a long-term contract and the meters are causing businesses to move out, then how do you break a long-term contract before the meters have caused too much damage to downtown? The company would want a long-term contract so they can redeem some of their costs in setting up the meters.

Would the study suggest we need another parking lot or possibly another parking garage? There is no doubt that the city would need more parking, especially if City Hall relocates downtown, which would place a huge strain on the downtown parking. Who would pay for the additional parking? Would the downtown study implementation possibly push the city’s other needed projects to the bottom of the list, once again?

I detest parking meters and having to remember when the meter is due to expire so I can get back in time to feed the meter more money, or possibly receive a citation costing me more money for my trip downtown. If the meters are installed, I will choose to say no thank you to the aggravation and hassle of it all and not patronize downtown. Meters may be fine in bigger cities, but could the meters possibly destroy our downtown after all the work that has been put into it to make it prosper once again?

Until next week, I hope the city will carefully weigh the recommendations of the study. It cost money to implement ideas that the city doesn’t have to spend. The city needs to evaluate projects wisely as to whether they are top priorities and worthy of spending money on them. Consideration of our debt of $67 million needs to be evaluated when spending any more money on major projects.


Good 2 B Me

You cannot ever be taken seriously when you begin every blog with: "My topic this week is..."

It sounds like a Third Grader is writing the blog.


or state things as a fact but have no details such as saying "it may cost" or "they may want a percentage". No concrete numbers leads to no credibility.

Football Fan 44089

Exactly. I could just easily say the drilling into the concrete so the meters can be installed MAY create a perforation that MAY cause part of downtown Sandusky separate from the rest of the city and MAY float all the way to Canada.

Think of the things one can say no matter how ridiculous and all one has to do is use the word "may."


Expand the County parking garage going west to the old Third National Band bldg (now Bailey Law Office) and put a second floor walkway connecting to the Rieger Hotel. Parking solved for Senior apartments, merchant parking, and a place for sufficient parking for daily needs.

The Bizness

She detests them so they are a bad idea...

Can do what Ohio State and some cities did and have a private company run the parking.

I do like Nor'easters idea though.

BW1's picture

While her logic and writing skills may be lacking, she accurately displays popular sentiment about the meters - if there are meters, most people will choose to go elsewhere.

The Bizness

I could care less either way since I walk downtown, but I do understand why people would be turned off by meters.


"popular sentiment" does not show up in scientific data. Other cities have done similar studies and transient vehicles goes up with meters. Counterintuitively restaurant's and other businesses revenues also went up when installing meters.

BW1's picture

Only in areas where there weren't alternative venues with free parking.

Look at all the major retailers and restaurant franchises - they overwhelmingly choose to locate where they can provide their customers free parking. I'd put up their marketing data any day against some study done by ivory tower academics with a statist axe to grind who never risked a dime of their own money in business.

Truth or Dare

You know what grates my cheese, they're gonna fund yet another parking study w/taxpayer $$$'s (how many does that make since 1975), all the while that freakin monstrosity of a crumbling Keller remains standing and requires what was it, refinancing of a loan in order to tear it down? Aaaaaaaaaaagh!

When I park Downtown during the day I know I have 2 hrs. to conduct my business. This is just another example of the misuse of taxpayer $$$'s as they should be enforcing the parking laws already on the books. As for me, I'll park-n-walk as many blocks as it takes before paying to park. Oh, wait, I already do that by parking @ Shoreline Park, or Jackson St. Pier, or by the Library and then walk a few blocks to get where I need be, Spring thru Fall. On second thought, since parking is free in that lovely paid for with taxpayer $$$'s building/parking garage on the corner of Columbus and W. Market, I'll start parking there and just take my time.


No, no, no. It's not a STUDY, it's a PLAN! If you don't believe me, just check previous posts connected to this issue when all of us using the word "study" were corrected in no uncertain terms!

Here's my two cents: The City or the Main Street Association conducted a study that showed citizens were sick to death and tired of paying for studies, and that future studies should be called "plans" so as not to make the taxpayers mad about being stuck paying for more studies.

Woody Hayes

My topic this week is tying up howling dogs that live in the 5th street area to parking meters.


Hey Woodpecker:: If you don't like the local government conversation Ms. Johnson starts with her blogs, ya can always go back to reading your first issue of Mad Magazine.

Better yet, but that old tape in the VHS player and watch your favorite college football game , the 1978 Gator Bowl

Licorice Schtick

My topic of the week is installing a 5-minute meter on the podium in commission chambers.


Is there a problem with finding parking spots downtown? I have never had a problem finding one.


My topic this week is setting up a non-profit fund to collect the money needed to buy Sharon a thesaurus so she can stop starting every single column with the same stupid words (which were never appropriate writing from Day One).

I can't remember who said it, but he's saved me from total exasperation over Sharon's lack of ability by suggesting I replace "My topic this week" with "Dear Diary." Strangely enough, it works. AND it makes me laugh. Which I usually need after one of Sharon's rants...


I would have to say I agree 100%. I think about 90% of the posts so far have been critical of her writing abilities, and the other 10% must leave downtown and object to meters as well. Regardless, I used some statistics, rather than loose ended arguments.


Ah yes. Licorice Schtick and SamAdams. Those time and trusted comedians never writing anything pertaining to Ms. Johnson's post. Reminds me of my favorite Muppets characters----Statler and Waldorf.


Actually, I was one of any number of commenters on a previous article on this same topic (which Sharon, apparently lacking an original thought of her own, appears to be re-hashing here). At that time, quite a few suggestions and other thoughts were offered.

This? This "story" or "column" or whatever OTHER pathetic excuse for either editorial or news this may be is more a joke than it is anything else. How can you possibly be surprised that some of us treat it like it is exactly that?

T. A. Schwanger

What is your feeling Sam on what measures should be take for downtown parking issues


Question, Did a commissioner actually suggest meters?
Opinion, Instead of hiring a cop to collect the money and look for violations, just ask Lippus to do it!


Another study, plan, committee, whatever you want to call it....a circle ejaculatory contest....another roadblock to decisive action. Just cover for politicians afraid to make decisions.

Meanwhile, what happened to the housing improvement scandal that cost our city millions of dollars?

Sharon, why not make that your topic next week, and every week, until somebody is held accountable?


I think "reader" hit the nail on the head. Millions of dollars wasted and no one held accountable. But, we worry about parking meters.

What a great investigative story for SR. Why do they shy away from this blockbuster?

Woody Hayes

To paved:
Sorry to pick on Grandma.


That's OK Woodpecker.

Your broken record "howling dog" comment on Ms. Johnson's blogs just shows you have no useful suggestions to address her comments which are geared to bring forth community generated ideas and suggestions.

Don S

I remember when parking meters were down town. They were removed for a reason, they drove down town customers away and were not economical for the city to maintain. Installing them now will kill what little business that are there out of downtown, again !!! What a stupid idea !!!!

T. A. Schwanger


I can't help chuckling when someone comments a study or plan will give an "unbiased" look at what needs to be done. Typically, the study consulting group does not come up with their own solutions. They interview the movers, shakers or stakeholders and out of those conversations comes the study.

A more accurate number for taxpayer funds spent downtown in the last 3 years is $47,000 from the Battery Park TIF. A $29,000 Downtown Marketing Study in 2010 and $18,000 for the 2013 Parking Study.

How about using the rest of the Battery Park TIF to master plan the Sandusky Bay Pavilion and Battery Park--under the name of economic development?

One thing I've learned from Sandusky--history does have a habit of repeating.