The North Hempstead Town Board will hold a public hearing and vote at its next meeting on extending parking limits on the east and west sides of Plandome Road in Manhasset.
Council member Veronica Lurvey moved for a resolution to set a date on a public hearing and vote to extend the street’s usual parking limits, which top out at one hour, to two hours at the board’s meeting last Wednesday.
“This resolution comes from discussions with constituents in town, and it would change the parking time limit restrictions from one hour to two hours to encourage people to park, shop and linger in town,” Lurvey said.
Lurvey said at a Sept. 19 meeting of the Council of Greater Manhasset Civic Associations that she came to the resolution “at the suggestion and in discussion with the Manhasset Chamber of Commerce.”
Civic group president Richard Bentley responded negatively, pointing out that the original one-hour limit had been established to promote turnover for local businesses.
“The store owners want more customer parking,” Bentley said in response. “The way you get more customer parking is that you require a higher turnover so that you can bring in customers.”
Bentley later said in a brief telephone interview that the limit was originally set in order to discourage merchants from parking on Plandome Road and moving their cars every few hours, and instead meant to encourage them to acquire permits for parking in a lot just east of Locust Place, behind the Raindew Plandome True Value hardware store.
“The merchants are saying it’s for the customer’s benefit, when in fact it’s not good for shoppers,” Bentley said.
Lurvey also mentioned at the Greater Civic meeting that her office was looking into another measure for parking in Manhasset, but did not bring it up at the subsequent town council meeting.
“We’re also looking into opening up the Town Hall parking lot to the public on weekends, with the understanding that there can be no overnight parking,” Lurvey said.
“Thank God, we’ve been talking about that for years,” Bentley replied.
Lurvey emphasized at the Greater Civic meeting that the proposed Plandome Road parking ordinance would be “a pilot.”
“This is something we’re going to try as a pilot, and if it doesn’t work, then it doesn’t work,” Lurvey said.
A request for comment from the Manhasset Chamber of Commerce was unavailing.
The public hearing and vote will occur at the Town Board’s next meeting on Oct. 10 at 7 p.m. at Town Hall in Manhasset.