Frisco candidate Q&A: Would you consider keeping the Main Street pedestrian promenade post-pandemic?
This is a tough question for me because I personally like the promenade; however, I believe the promenade has served its purpose and should end. There are several reasons influencing my opinion:
- Some businesses in that section of Main Street greatly prefer convenient parking for their customers over the promenade. Those businesses don’t want the promenade or the parklets reducing parking spaces and forcing customers to park blocks away.
- Parking is already at a premium in Frisco, and losing nearly 100 parking spots only makes things worse for residents and visitors. I also dislike the proposed paid parking at the marina and conversation about extending that initiative to Main Street.
- We need to be fair with all our businesses. Based on analysis of tax revenue from 2019, 2020 and 2021, some businesses within the promenade saw higher revenue increases than similar businesses outside the promenade. We need to be mindful and treat all businesses fairly.
- Many residents have complained about the lack of convenient parking since starting the Main Street pedestrian promenade, stating a preference to park near Main Street businesses.
— David Rolling
Yes, based on invaluable input from the local retail and restaurant businesses, we should work to create festivals and events that would maximize the productivity of the downtown area. It creates a more open and inviting atmosphere to the town of Frisco. A consideration for parking needs to be a part of the conversation when planning a more frequent Main Street pedestrian promenade.
— John Hammett
Returning the promenade is my No. 1 priority. A downtown designed for pedestrian-first use would create an identity for our town as being uniquely livable. Initially, businesses within the promenade were concerned it may deter customers. However, the opposite turned out to be true. People were sucked into the promenade, and now the concern comes from businesses on the outside. I believe the increased business from within the promenade is proof of concept and should have us considering expansion.
The people of Frisco deserve to have a voice on this issue and an opportunity to vote.
— James Hayes Walsh
My opinion on this matter needs to come from more information than has so far been procured. In 2021, a study was done regarding the growth in sales of businesses both within the promenade and outside of the promenade. The results showed that businesses within the promenade grew more than those outside.
However, a comparative study of the years prior to the promenade was not done, so we have no way of knowing whether the disparity in growth is something that was caused by the promenade or if it was the case previously, as well. I would like to see that study done and use the results of that study to help form my opinion
— Lisa Holenko
No. Personally, I loved the promenade. It was fun. There was a great sense of community. We did it to help businesses survive the capacity restrictions due to the pandemic. It turned out that we disproportionately aided some businesses on Main Street. The negative effects to those outside the pedestrian-only area were great. We had created an inequity that did not exist before.
The other issue is from the planning side. Main Street was not designed for this. Traffic patterns, parking, emergency service access and lack of supportive infrastructure are the things that need to be addressed. Granite and Galena streets would need to be built out with rights of way, parking, pedestrian and bicycle access. These things take time in the municipal realm.
It is for those reasons I do not support bringing the promenade back.
— Andy Held
The promenade was a helpful idea during the pandemic, and while it does have a quaint feeling, I don’t think it is necessary in the future. I think Main Street Frisco should flow as it does and the businesses who’ve chosen to operate on Main Street didn’t factor a promenade into their business plans. I think letting traffic flow down Main Street is fair for everyone.
Perhaps in the future there could be a discussion on all of Main Street being included in a promenade, but local feedback in casual conversations suggest that businesses outside of the enclosed pedestrian area have seen lower sales and parking issues surrounding their businesses. Some businesses have expressed that all of the parking near their business is full for most of the day in the summer, with cars parked by visitors who are primarily there to visit the promenade, while customers trying to visit the businesses outside of the promenade struggle to find parking or avoid shopping in those areas because of congestion.
— Elizabeth Skrzypczak-Adrian
I would consider keeping the pedestrian promenade. I used it daily during the summer and feel that it has a certain quality that is reminiscent of visiting a fair or farmers market. I know many community members loved it and want to honor that feedback.
— Joe “Buck” Phillips
Three seats are up for election on Frisco Town Council. Read more candidate Q&As at SummitDaily.com/election.
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