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South Greeley Shop Owners Mixed on Parking Hours

NEW CASTLE, N.Y. -- The New Castle Town Board has extended all parking hours in Chappaqua from one hour to two hours, for the bustling South Greeley Avenue. Town officials say the measure was designed to help Chappaqua businesses along South Greeley, but some of the shop owners don’t think they will see a difference.

“It means nothing really,” said Peter Zimmerman, owner of EZ Sports in Chappaqua. “People have parked there for more than an hour before and no one was ticketed. I’ve seen people park there and go to New York City for the day and come back without a ticket. The bigger issue is the parking lot behind our stores. That thing may never been finished and it's making less parking spaces around here.”

Still, New Castle Supervisor Barbara Gerrard said this decision, which was made effective immediately by the town board on June 12, was made at the suggestion of the local merchants.

"We are increasing the hours for parking from one hour to two hours as a way to encourage people to stay downtown," Gerrard said.

Lou Bastone, the owner of Chappaqua Paint and Hardware, a few steps down from EZ Sports on South Greeley Ave., agreed with Zimmerman.

“It’s not going to make much of a difference,” he said. “They didn’t really enforce the parking before so maybe if they do it might become an issue. But, it doesn’t make much of a difference business- wise. There are just fewer spots around here.”

Michael Kuchner, manager of Squire’s Clothing and Footwear on South Greeley Ave., said he was completely unaware of the change in parking because the signs haven’t changed yet. The signs along Greeley still say “One Hour Parking”.

“They need to post some temporary signage to help people understand the change in parking hours. People need some clarity. It doesn’t make any difference, if people are not aware of it. If people are made aware, then it will definitely make a difference in business.”

Keith Levey, manager of the Houlihan Lawrence office in Chappaqua, said he saw the positives in the upcoming change. “It will definitely improve the shopping experience,” he said. “For people who come here, it definitely takes more than an hour to do anything. It will encourage people to stay here longer. People get confused because in the back it's two hours but up front is one [hour] so more uniform signage will help business as well.”

“For my business, our agents do business in Chappaqua all day so they need a place to park,” Levey said. “Our customers need a place to park if they want to meet with their agent, without the fear of getting a ticket.”

Do you think the change to two-hour parking will help business on South Greeley Ave?

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