NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - A controversial plan to privatize parking in Nashville is off the table, at least for now.
Mayor David Briley announced on Friday he is pressing pause on the proposal, which would have made major changes to on-street parking.
The price of parking meters would have cost more and there would have been more of them installed in the city.
In April there was significant public response to a proposal to contract a private company, for 30 years, to run parking operations at city owned parking lots.
A lot of people were glad to hear that the mayor’s parking plan is dead for now.
“I’m delighted,” said Ben Swank.
The plan would have added more meters in the city’s core and popular neighborhoods. There would have been new meters on streets that don’t have them now like in The Gulch, SoBro, Downtown and West End, where Brittinie Gordon lives.
“I would have to pay to park at my own house? That’s crazy,” said Gordon. “I’m glad he’s not going to do that.”
“There’s something nice about the city offering free parking to residents and tourists, or whoever, so I think it’s good to abandon, actually,” said Emiko Borne.
The mayor’s play would have meant no more free parking at meters after 6 p.m. and on Sundays. The cost to park at a meter would have gone up 25 cents an hour.
“Having a lower price for parking is probably a good thing,” said Jacque Moore.
Parking tickets would have increased from $10 or $15 to $25.
The mayor had proposed contracting with a private company which would have controlled Nashville’s on-street parking in exchange for paying Metro $34 million up front.
“Instead of prioritizing making a quick buck for whoever this company is, let’s have some space that’s hear for the residents,” said Swank.
The Mayor’s Office issued a statement saying “residents still have questions about the proposal” mentioning too he wanted to get past the “noise of the election season.”
The Mayor’s office plans to make up the $34 million in revenue they were counting on to balance the budget by refinancing TIF loans.