Letters to the Editor

Parking dilemma hurts business

We know it is the goal of the City to grow new businesses and to help current businesses to thrive, but we disagree with the decision to sell 16 parking spaces to Chase Bank at 24 A St. SE.

According to an Auburn Reporter article, "Chase Bank's exclusive parking places irk surrounding businesses" (Jan. 10), the decision to sell these spaces was to help ease another property and development sale, which included parking spaces that Chase Bank had perceived as theirs.

The local businesses affected by the reduced parking choice have a right to be concerned.

Giovanni Di Quattro, owner of the Rainbow Cafe, is correct about the loss to his restaurant. Just this week, he lost another four lunch customers due to our inability to park close enough, yet there are many unfilled spaces marked "Chase Bank 1 hour parking." We are not very likely to try again unless the parking issue is resolved.

Maybe the City is not concerned about the revenue from these small businesses, but it certainly will not boost the local economy to have them close. The Rainbow Cafe has been in business in Auburn since 1929. The new owner deserves the chance to grow his business as well.

Perhaps our next step may be a sit-in, or park-in, to protest the waste of valuable parking space. Or perhaps the City and Chase Bank can and should renegotiate a deal that keeps parking open for any citizen.

– Lucille Gress

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