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City may remove parking requirements for future businesses in South Cape

Posted at 11:08 AM, Oct 24, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-24 11:27:21-04

CAPE CORAL, Fla. -- Right now, the City of Cape Coral is talking about getting rid of the parking requirements for future developers in South Cape.

This is part of the city’s plan to make the area more walkable and free up some space for more businesses.

“I think it’s kind of cool that they are handing it over to the other side to help accommodate," said Shannon Yates, the owner of the Nevermind bar in South Cape.

Yates supports the idea to allow future developers to decide how many parking spots they need for their business, as opposed to the city making that decision.

“Better calculation of the spots and more utilization of the spots is good,” said Yates.

Ultimately the goal is to attract more businesses especially during the day time and diversify the businesses in the South Cape,” said Ricardo Noguera, the city's economic development manager.

Noguera said right now, a typical restaurant in South Cape needs to provide 30 parking spots.

“In an urban area, that’s difficult for a restaurant,” Noguera said.

He said there’s already enough on-street parking and city parking lots for customers to use.

Plus, businesses can share parking when used at different times of the day.

“My game plan is to fill these vacant spaces,” said Noguera.

However, Yates has one concern.

“You don’t want the developer to smug the numbers to make the client happy,” said Yates.

The city is still in the process of getting recommendations from the planning and zoning commission. They also plan to do a parking study over the next six to eight months.