Brown County Commissioners and two business owners discussed the issue of lack of parking spaces around the courthouse during Tuesday meeting of the commissioners court.
Commissioners discussed some ideas but took no action. Van Stewart, who owns a building on the corner of North Broad way and Center and where 21 people work, said business owners are putting together plans which they will present to commissioners.
Commissioner Gary Worley said he’s heard from business owners on Center and South Broadway about parking issues around the courthouse and around their businesses, mainly on jury days.
“That’s the big problem, when there’s a huge influx of people coming to jury duty,” Worley said. “They’re parking out here in front of the courthouse because it’s convenient and they’re leaving their vehicles there all day. On Fisk Street that would be fine or on North Broadway that would be fine. There are no businesses on North Broadway facing the courthouse They’re empty buildings.”
Worley said thought installing signs that limit parking to one or two hours might help.
“It would limit someone from parking and leaving their vehicle there all day, and that’s what these business owners are talking about,” Worley said. “There’s no place for their clients to come in and park.”
Mickey Stanley, owner of the Brownwood Insurance Center, said the issue is “getting people in and out of our business. On the court days that’s tough. It’s even tough to get our employees parking.”
Stanley said parking spaces are large and reducing the size of the spaces would increase their number.
Stewart said a group of business owners are trying to come up with some ideas to present to commissioners. “I think we all realize more parking is not just going to magically appear,” Stewart said. “But I think there’s some unique planning such as the smaller parking spaces and a couple of other ideas we’d like to present that might gain a few more for us. I’m glad we realize we’re all on the same page.”
Worley said, “we do hear you. We do know it’s a problem and I think we will do whatever we can to help alleviate it. I can go to the city and ask them to restripe down Center Avenue and around the courthouse to make it not a 12-foot parking lane, make it a 10-foot. Your voices are not falling on deaf ears.”