Proposal would use funds from Phase 4 of Waterfront Park to prev - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Proposal would use funds from Phase 4 of Waterfront Park to prevent paid parking

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A plan to charge for parking at Waterfront Park is stuck in neutral. 

The Waterfront Park board voted for $3 parking fees for three hours from Wednesday to Sunday, but then came a suggestion to pump the brakes.

"The county attorney has asked them to put that on hold for at least a couple of weeks," Louisville Metro Councilman Bill Hollander said.

Since then, wheels have been spinning among city leaders. 

"There are people of very limited means who use that park, and it's going to be an impediment for them to use the park in the future," Hollander said.

He and the rest of the council are trying to figure out how to keep parking free while also coping with state funding being pulled. Oliver Barber Jr., who sits on the Waterfront Development Corporation board, has a new idea.

Detailed it in a letter to Hollander. Barber said wants to use $240,000 put away to buy land for Phase 4 of Waterfront Park, a project that would extend the park into the Portland neighborhood.

"We're not taking away from the west end," Barber said. "We're just trying to make sure the park is available and attractive going forward for everybody."

If Metro Council decided to pass an ordinance to hand over the money, it would also have to guarantee the same sum for the foreseeable future.

"I don't think that's a very good solution long-term," Hollander said.

Instead, he said Waterfront Park should be looking at a $13 million-plus reserve in their foundation.

"They say (it's) used for capital, and it should be used for capital in the long-term, but to use a small portion for that -- a couple thousand dollars -- during this short-term problem is something they should be considering as well," Hollander said.

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