A Project for Better Journalism chapter
Opinion, Uncategorized

Downtown Parking Becoming Scarce

Downtown Northampton is a popular and busy place for both locals and visitors, but rather than dealing with the hassle of parking downtown, some locals decide to not go at all.

Northampton High School junior Liam Maginnis finds himself downtown two or three times a month. When he is downtown, he tries to park in the parking garage or the parking lots because it is often difficult to find an open parking space on the street.

“I almost never park on the street,” said Maginnis. “The spots on the street should be used for quick visits like going to one store.” Maginnis said “the parking garage is underutilized” and he never has to go past the third floor to find a spot.

Maginnis said one time, when he and his mother went to a show at the Calvin Theater, there was no parking to be found. Similarly, Maginnis said, “If I ever go downtown (during an event) I try to have my mother drop me off,” because there is not enough parking for large events.

Charley Western, an NHS junior, said that parking is well situated downtown, but parking availability depends on when you are downtown Western only recently got his license so he has not driven himself downtown too much.

“When I’m getting bagels at Bruegger’s, my parents will drop me off and just loop around a couple of times to avoid the hassle of parking,” said Western.

Western goes downtown two or three times a month, and said he prefers to park on the street. Although, depending on where he is going, he will park in different places. If he is going to Thornes Marketplace, Western will park in the garage. When he goes to the Iron Horse, he uses the parking lot by the courthouse.

Freshmen Bennett McCreary said he typically goes downtown at least once a week. Half of the time he walks and the other half he is driven. Whenever he gets driven downtown his parents try to park in one of the parking lots or the garage.

“Because there is not enough parking,” said McCreary, “Often we have to find parking far away and walk downtown.”