STARKVILLE, Miss. (WTVA) — The city of Starkville is once again dealing with a parking problem.
It's a dilemma the city has been tackling for almost four decades.
Soon, police will start enforcing a two-hour time limit for parking on Main Street downtown.
"The Downtown Merchants Association has asked us to try and reconsider that and try on a temporary basis to go back and start enforcement again," said Chief David Lindley, "which we plan to do shortly and see what impact that has on turnover of parking availability."
Compounding the problem is employees of stores that park in spaces that some feel should go to visitors and shoppers.
"We're definitely excited about the police department committing time to help us with the enforcement of the parking because we're so crowded," added Jennifer Gregory, the chief operating officer for the Greater Starkville Development Partnership. "Downtown has become such a hot spot, and people want to spend time here."
Community leaders said despite the fact there is an issue with parking at certain times of the day, it's a good problem to have. They added they are confident the city will be able to resolve this issue sometime by March and April when more people visit Starkville.
"It is such a good problem to have that there is such a high demand for parking spaces on Main Street," said Gregory. "Hopefully, by our busiest time, which is April with the Cotton District Arts Festival and Super Bulldog Weekend, we'll make sure we have plenty of room for the people that are shopping and wanting to do business downtown."
Besides having a part-time enforcement officer patrol the area, there are some plans in place to help people identify other parking areas close to Main Street.
"We also hope to be working with the city of Starkville on restriping some of the parking lots in the public parking lots and make those lots a little more accessible and efficient," said Gregory. "We've also been working with the Main Street Association on additional lighting, perhaps in some of those areas so people feel safe to park off of Main Street."
Employees of stores are encouraged to use free parking located in lots adjacent to downtown.
Lindley added the department will start looking next week for a part-time enforcement officer.