City of Greenville revisits new Uptown parking plan

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WITN) -If you’re someone who’s visited Uptown Greenville since the start of 2023, you may have run into an issue with parking.

“Parking is going to be something that we have to figure out how to manage,” said Rick Smiley, City Councilmember.

Some would say that’s because of the parking plan that went into effect on January 1st.

“It’s just confusing,” said Matthew Scully, who is the owner of The Scullery, located in Uptown. “I think we need to figure out exactly what’s happening. When it’s going to be enforced and exactly what the rules are.”

The new plan includes fees that are causing people to pay more, in order to remain parked for a longer time.

Scully said he believes the previous plan was better because it featured two-hour free parking versus what is now one-hour free parking, which he said is already affecting his business.

“It just has deterred some people from coming to our business the past couple of days,” Scully said. “That’s disappointing.”

The parking changes have caused an uproar, which is why City Council members held a public meeting Monday night.

During the meeting, Mayor PJ Connelly expressed that he doesn’t believe Greenville is big enough to have the plan in place.

“In my opinion, I don’t think our uptown or downtown is there yet,” Connelly said. “I just don’t.”

Along with the fees, some said that parking throughout the day is limited anyway and that can put a strain on residents.

“Even people that live locally downtown or in the Uptown area, can’t access our businesses because there’s no parking,” said Molly Cashion, who is the owner of Molly’s Community Cafe.

Going into Monday’s meeting, the city had planned to use January as an educational month with no warning citations to give people a chance to learn how the plan works.

However, after hearing many concerns they voted to extend that through March.

Council also voted to go back to two-hour free parking until March as well, when they’ll take a look at the plan again.

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