Parking changes in downtown Winston-Salem frustrate business owners

Some business owners in downtown Winston-Salem have brought their concerns about recent parking changes to the city. Over the past few months, lots on busy downtown streets, such as Trade Street and Liberty Street, have been turned into paid parking areas. Some businesses say it affects their bottom line. “It’s hard for all business owners to figure out what we’re going to do,” said Debra Everhart, owner of Dye Pretty Salon. On any given day, you can see Everhart getting a haircut at the Dye Pretty Salon on Trade Street in Winston-Salem. “We’ve all worked really hard to build this part of downtown Winston-Salem in our arts district,” Everhart said. “We’ve been at this place for 13 years, and once we’ve gotten to this point, it’s frustrating that they’re now going to make money off of us. It doesn’t feel good.” Several used to be free to customers over the past few months The parking lot has now become a paid parking lot, which also includes for business owners. “For each of our business owners, we pay $50 a month to park in that lot—a total of $100 a month in extra,” Everhart said. “This is coming out of the recession and COVID, and it’s a tough pill to swallow.” “$20 a day to stop working there for eight hours,” said Alex Assistant Store Manager Emily McFarland of Cheesecakes. “That’s where my employees park and it’s a game changer because we have to find somewhere else to park and I don’t want my employees to pay because it’s kind of ridiculous.” “We moved to this place because we had parking. bit,” McFarland added. “And our frustration is having to look elsewhere, or spend our own money to get our work done.” “It has affected the Silver Moon Saloon,” Everhart said. “Their weekend and after-hours business was down significantly.” “They just threw the sign one day,” McFarland said. “Here we are. They also recently installed cameras, so it’s really regulated now.” “We’ve heard a lot of complaints, and that’s part of the growth — I know,” Everhart said. “But it affects future business, it does.” Workers had to park a few blocks away. They hope they can find some kind of solution. “You know, a lot of people go late, and it can get scary,” McFarland said. “I hope we can find an alternative soon. All we can do is try.” The lots are privately owned by Smart Park. I tried to call the number listed by the company but we didn’t hear back. Several business owners told WXII they plan to meet with city council members this week to see if there is anything they can do.

Some business owners in downtown Winston-Salem are bringing their concerns about recent parking changes to the city.

Over the past few months, lots on busy downtown streets, such as Trade Street and Liberty Street, have been turned into paid parking areas. Some businesses say this is affecting their bottom lines.

“It’s hard for all business owners to figure out what we’re going to do,” says Dye Pretty Salon owner Debra Everhart.

On any given day, you can find Everhart haircuts at the Dye Pretty Salon on Trade Street in Winston-Salem.

“We’ve all worked really hard to build this part of downtown Winston-Salem in our arts district,” Everhart said. “We’ve been in this place for 13 years, and once we get to this point, it’s frustrating that they’re going to make money off us now. That doesn’t feel good.”

In the past few months, several parking lots that were once free to customers have become paid parking lots, including business owners.

“For each of our business owners, we pay $50 a month to park on that lot — an extra $100 a month,” Everhart said. “This is coming out of the recession and COVID, and it’s a tough pill to swallow.”

“It costs about $20 to park an eight-hour shift a day,” says Cheesecakes of Alex Assistant Store Manager Emily McFarland. “That’s where my employees park and it’s a game changer because we have to find other places to park and I don’t want my employees to pay because it’s kind of ridiculous.”

“We moved to this place because we had parking,” McFarland added. “And our frustration is having to look elsewhere or spend our own money to pay for our work.”

Businesses say it’s not only impacting their bottom lines, but it’s preventing people from coming to the city centre in general.

“It has affected the Silver Moon Saloon,” Everhart said. “Their weekend and after-hours business has dropped significantly.”

“They just put up signs one day,” McFarlane said. “We’re here. They’ve also recently installed cameras, so it’s really regulated now.”

“We’ve heard a lot of complaints, and that’s part of the growth — I know,” Everhart said. “But it affects future business, it does.”

Workers had to park a few blocks away. They hope to find some kind of solution.

“You know, a lot of people go late, and it can get scary,” McFarland said. “I hope we can find an alternative soon. All we can do is try.”

The lots are privately owned by Smart Park. I tried to call the number listed by the company but we didn’t hear back.

Several business owners told WXII they plan to meet with city council members this week to see if something can be done.

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