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North Park business owners push back against mayor's plan to remove parking

Posted at 5:10 PM, Jul 18, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-18 21:52:31-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - North Park business owners are pushing back against Mayor Kevin Faulconer's recent decision to remove upwards of 400 parking spots from 30th Street.

The extra space would make way for protected bike lanes from Howard to Juniper, helping the city achieve climate action goals.

"Eliminating all of the parking I think will effectively destroy some of the businesses that are here," Said Lara Worm, who owns Bivouac Ciderworks on 30th Street.

In a May 16 memo, Faulconer said the decision would bring new mobility choices into the neighborhood and help with a dangerous situation for bicyclists and riders of dockless scooters.

RELATED: Hundreds of parking spaces in North Park could be replaced with protected bike lanes

The plan calls for removing about 420 parking spaces and instead installing bollards that block off bike lanes, much like what is currently on J Street in downtown.

Andy Hanshaw, who heads the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition, said bike-friendly neighborhoods help businesses.

"You're also adding comfort space for more people to access your business," he said.

The North Park Main Street Association is now calling on the mayor to opt for an alternative that would keep about 200 spots on 30th, and protect bikes with parked cars as the barrier. The city installed a similar configuration on Beech Street.

"It combines the two," said Angela Landsberg, the organization's executive director. "It allows the bikes to co-exist with the cars."

In a statement, a spokesman for the mayor said discussions are ongoing, and that the office is committed to delivering a project that works for the community at large.

He added that North Park has a severely underused parking garage at 30th and University, and that the current plan calls for adding 90 spaces in the areas adjacent to 30th Street.