The possibility of building a new parking structure in Patchogue Village was discussed at Monday's Village Board of Trustees meeting at .
A Parking Deck Feasibility Study report was presented by Level G Associates and announced by the Village's (BID).
The study offered ideas and recommendations to improve parking in Patchogue Village, including a parking garage. It also offered statistics on when the four quadrants of the business district are busiest and how to renovate the area to relieve parking stress.
“We need go through a careful process of evaluation in order to make sure there’s construction in the right place,” Level G President Gerard Giosa said. “The purpose of the study was to make due diligence for tiered parking, and all recommendations are to improve parking.”
The report recorded the number of on- and off-street parked cars and took weekdays and weekends into account, as well as performances at the that would significantly increase the amount of parked cars.
According to Giosa, there are 318 on-street parking spaces and 1,415 off-street. The total of no time limit spaces equaled 63.3 percent of spaces, two-hour limit spaces at 28.9 percent, and 30 minute limits at 1.4 percent.
The study said a parking deck would cost between four and seven million dollars depending on its location, the possibilities being one of four current parking lots. The deck would offer a net gain of about 200 spaces.
“The normal cost to build a parking deck is about $17,000 per space, but because we have to replace existing parking spaces, that’s why the cost per net space gain is higher,” Giosa said.
Aside from the deck, ideas for parking improvement included the placement of signs directing to parking areas, reduction of two-hour parking limits to 90 minutes and enforcing time limits by chalking tires or installing parking meters.
The discussion of parking meters raised controversy among locals with the concern that it would hurt business, and guests also had differing opinions on the creation of a parking garage.
“It’s a good start, but let’s hope they look down the road before they do what they think will be a phenomenal decision for Patchogue,” said Thomas Keegan, co-owner of
Dennis Smith of the BID ensured the crowd that nothing was set in stone- the research was to plant the idea and begin thinking about the best, most cost-effective ways to help the parking situation.
“With this study, we were looking to start the conversation. We’re not going to build a tiered parking garage in the next year,” Smith said. “Now we know what’s happening in the four quadrants and I think we certainly got what we were looking for- we found where the problems are.”
Mayor Paul Pontieri agreed with Smith and believes signage is the best place to start--the need for a parking garage could be discussed after evaluating this course of action.
“It’s a critical piece. You could drive into Patchogue and if you’re going to the Theatre, there are no signs at all,” Pontieri said.
“We should determine the need then, not the need now," he said of a parking garage.