City of Amarillo gives initial green light to bring paid parking downtown

Years in the making, paid parking in downtown Amarillo took the step it needed on Tuesday afternoon to become a reality.

City of Amarillo gives initial green light to bring paid parking downtown
The City of Amarillo has given the green light for paid parking to come to designated areas in downtown. (Source: KFDA)

AMARILLO, TX (KFDA) - At a rate of one dollar per hour, paid parking is expected to begin in the City of Amarillo in January.

After hearing from residents, paid parking will affect a smaller zone than what was originally planned.

Hours of operation will be Monday through Friday from 8 A.M. to 5 P.M.

You will not be required to pay on weekends or on city holidays.

City of Amarillo gives initial green light to bring paid parking downtown

Overall, the city has about 1,900 spaces.

This plan will effect about 700 of those spaces in a designated area, leaving the others to still be free or time-limited parking.

“It’s reduced to a boundary of 3rd Street to the North, Johnson to the East, 10th to the South and then a portion of Taylor between 4th and 9th,” said Andrew Freeman, Director of Planning and Development Services for the City of Amarillo.

While the city says they’ll still be using ParkMobile, the app where you pay on your smart phone or dial in, the ordinance provides an option to explore other types of meter systems if needed.

“We’d probably watch to see how familiar folks are being with the system,” said Freeman. “If they’re having issues or if there’s a need for cash based. Those kind of things. We’d be able to evaluate it. Also, it’d give us time to collect some revenue up front that could be used to pay for those capital improvements because right now there’s no upfront cost for the digital system.”

Valet parking for downtown Amarillo was also given the green light and could begin sooner than paid parking.

“Would the valet parking ordinance affect adversely the Church?,” asked Councilmember Howard Smith.

The city says that’s a common question they’ve received from residents.

Valet parking licenses will not operate at a place of religious worship, but will at businesses in the area.

“Some of the interest we received are on the west side of the zone that is still free time limit parking,” said Freeman. “So on Polk Street, if someone is interested in putting one in there, they could go ahead and start now and it wouldn’t impact paid parking. We’d still work with them as far as if it’s a metered space or time space. We’d be able to block those off for their hours of operations.”

The city requires a second reading of both ordinances, which will happen next Tuesday, for it to become official.

After, the city will begin developing and accepting applications for valet parking businesses.

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