Metering in the market: Breakfast killer? | Arkansas Blog

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Metering in the market: Breakfast killer?

Posted By on Tue, Nov 26, 2013 at 1:55 PM

click to enlarge River Market parking meter.
  • River Market parking meter.

So today, in the freezing cold morning, I decided to drop in at Boulevard in the River Market to get some very strong coffee. But I forgot — you don't drop in anymore. You park and find one of those meters, plug the meter, get your slip that shows you are legal and return to your car with it and put it on the dash. Then you go get your coffee.

It was pretty empty in the River Market this morning, so I asked at the Boulevard: Are the meters killing your breakfast business? Answer: Yes.

But Diana Long, who is the marketing head of the River Market, says it's not the meters but the fact that this is Thanksgiving week that was the reason why the Ottenheimer Food Hall was dead. She said she sees plenty of people using the meters — many of them confused about how long to leave their cards in (it's not like a gas pump swipe; you leave them in, she explained) — and she helps them out. The parking fees go back into the River Market district to help pay for extra lighting and security, she said. 

Apparently, I was just drawing a conclusion based on my own aversion to seeking out a meter and paying and returning to my car before ducking in for a cup of coffee to go. 

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