FAYETTEVILLE (KFSM) -- Fayetteville city leaders are moving forward with a plan to address parking issues downtown and in the city's entertainment district.
Consultant recently finished up the plan and presented it to the city council. City councilors adopted the parking master plan Tuesday (March 7) that they hope will fix the issues.
"We want to make parking simple, we want folks to not even give another thought to parking," parking manager Justin Clay said.
Clay said phase one of the plan contains 10 primary objectives. Some of which include updating technology to expand mobile payment and streamlining signage to lessen the time it takes drivers to find parking.
'"I've driven around before looking for a spot for like 10, 15 minutes," Fayetteville resident Kaitlin said.
Kaitlin parks along Dickson Street about three to four times a week. She said finding a spot can sometimes be a chore.
"Whenever this parking lot is full because of a Walton Arts Center show, it's very difficult to find parking spots in the area," she said.
She said she would like to see additional parking spaces be included.
Clay said that is also being discussed.
"There's significant opportunity there within the existing parking system to open more of it up to public accessibility," he said.
He said that could include adding on street parking where it's currently not an option. Study consultants said the entire downtown and entertainment area contains around 9,000 parking spaces. Clay said the spots are often there, they just need to help drivers find them.
"The key I think is how do we get people to those spaces, and improve walkability and lighting... and improving... improving our signage to make sure people are aware that parking does exist just around the corner," he said.
Another object is to train parking enforcers as ambassadors with more of a focus on customer service and less on strict enforcement.
Clay said the two additional phases will be brought to the city council in the next few years. Phase one will be implemented through 2019.