Free Parking at West Side Market to Expire?

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CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Free parking at the West Side Market may soon expire.

Ohio city is growing, and it needs more parking, especially on the weekends, so a new parking proposal to relieve congestion is getting mixed reviews.

Meredith Farrow says Clevelanders have to pay for parking at other venues, so why should the West Side Market be any different.

"If you are going to the Indians game, or the Cavs game, it's reasonable. You pay 20 bucks to go to that, and if it's gonna go to the city, and make this area nicer, I'm all for it," Farrow.

Ohio City Inc. and the city of Cleveland's new plan are to merge two city-owned lots just a couple blocks east of the market. To park your first 90 minutes would be free. After that, people will have to shell out $2 an hour or a $5 flat fee after 4 p.m.

Mike D'Amico, the owner of the Allstate Barber College on Lorain Avenue, says, "If you are going to the West Side Market, you are probably in and out in an hour and a half--maybe two hours, so that's reasonable."

At the Allstate Barber College, there were several people with mixed opinions on the controversial parking proposal.

Paul Heaton says, "I know with any city growth that the city is hard up for parking, but for the West Side Market, to do some shopping and actually spending money, I think it's a terrible idea to put that parking into effect. It's been free for four years now, and to revert back on that, it's a tragedy."

Some restaurants in Ohio City, like Crop on Lorain Avenue, have their employees park a few blocks away from work on the weekends to leave more spaces for customers which helps relieve some of the parking  problems.

Vendors at the market can block the parking proposal, so we'll have to wait and see what happens.