Relief to parking woes in downtown Mount Dora may be on the horizon. This week signs were erected to implement the city’s new 4-hour parking limit on select streets in downtown Mount Dora. The new policy is set to begin on March 28.
The time limit will be in effect from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., 7 days a week. Unlimited free parking is still available downtown on select streets, as well as the parking garage and the area’s public parking lots. Visitors can still park all day in those locations.
To help prepare for the 4-hour parking limit, the city has been communicating with downtown businesses to notify them and get feedback. Initially, police officers will issue a warning to acclimate people to the changes.
To assist getting the large delivery trucks in and out of downtown before the height of business, four new loading zones will be added to be in effect from 7 a.m. to 11 a.m. Each loading zone will occupy up to five parking spaces during the designated time. Those zones will be located at 4th Avenue near Alexander Street, 4th Avenue near Donnelly Street, Third Avenue west of Donnelly Street, and Fourth Avenue near Baker Street.
Although members of the CRA Board inquired about using the under-utilized pedestrian section of 4th Avenue as a one-way delivery zone to improve two-way traffic on downtown’s narrow streets, Mount Dora's Public Works Department stated the weight of vehicles could damage the pipes under the roadway. It’s unclear whether the current monthly food truck event located on the same portion of the roadway could also cause infrastructure damage.
On April 5, shuttles with room for seven passengers will begin operating to and from select parking lots on select days and times to help make getting to downtown more convenient for residents, employees and visitors.
Valet parking will also be coming to downtown to help ease parking woes. The city is in the process of selecting a vendor with hopes of offering the service in the next few months. According to the city, a couple of potential locations have been identified for the valet’s drop-off, however final determination will require input from the valet company selected.
Presently, the city has not acquired additional parking lots, but such acquisitions are included in a long-term plan.
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