Frisco delays plans to add paid parking at marina following public opposition Tuesday |

Frisco delays plans to add paid parking at marina following public opposition Tuesday

The Frisco Bay Marina is pictured on Monday, Aug. 23, 2021. Frisco Town Council voted to table plans for paid parking at the Frisco Marina after residents voiced concerns at Tuesday’s council meeting.
Joel Wexler/For the Summit Daily News

Public opposition mounted Tuesday regarding proposed plans for paid parking at Frisco Marina.

Frisco Town Council ultimately tabled the approval of a contract with a paid-parking vendor, deciding to push any action until after a May 10 work session, when it plans to discuss the contract and its goals for parking at the marina. Interstate Parking Company vice president Gareth Lloyd expressed some regret the contract was not approved with his company, but he said, “We’re pretty flexible with our solutions.”

He added that the company would continue to work with the town and wasn’t in a hurry to reach a decision.

Frisco residents and boaters brought forward a number of grievances with the proposed contract and plans to implement paid parking.

“I’m against any sort of payment,” resident Earl Dylan said. “We’re already paying for our slips. … I’ve got a 9-year-old boy who I don’t see a lot during the year, so in the summertime we sail nearly every single day. … We go out there at noon and we sail till the sun goes down. So that’s going to put a huge dent in my budget and what I’m able to do with my son.”

Like Dylan, the seven other residents who spoke at the meeting criticized the plan as a burden for residents already paying to rack kayaks, moor boats and slip their watercraft.

Gary Sonnett said boaters should not be charged and that the cost should instead fall on those parking to use the playground, bike around the lake or walk into town — those not already paying costs.

“They do not contribute to the marina,” he said, and continued, “The mayor made a statement saying that we should not be treated any differently as far as people coming to the beach and people that use the playground, and we should not be treated any differently simply because our boats float in the water. I think it’s seriously a direct insult, and I think many of us deserve an apology for that statement.”

Sonnett referenced a statement Mayor Hunter Mortensen made at Town Council’s April 12 meeting. Mortensen said, “I don’t see slip holders as being any special use group in this area. I think the people going to the playground are the same people going for the same reason as the slip holder. … It’s for everyone down there. They got no special rights just because they have a boat floating in the water,” according to previous Summit Daily reports.

Frisco resident Tom Castrigno encouraged councilors to consider the usage patterns of visitors.

Speaking about users of the old buddy pass system, Castrigno said, “They’re at the beach. They come all day. They use a parking space, drink out of the cooler, then go throw up in the bathroom and then leave. … They created traffic and parking problems but didn’t really contribute to the economy.”

Town councilors appreciated the comments received. Prior to Tuesday, the council and planning commission had expressed support for paid parking to address overcrowding.

“You cannot overestimate the impact you have during public comment,” town councilor Andy Held said following public comments.

“I strongly hope and encourage you all to make the next council meeting on May 10,” mayor Hunter Mortensen said.

The marina’s four parking lots have 321 parking spaces to serve its 447 slip, mooring and rack customers, along with any other visitors.

Per the original plan, the first 30 minutes would be free and then each half hour afterward would be 75 cents, with a $10 maximum on Mondays through Thursdays. On Fridays through Sundays, as well as holidays, it would free for the first half hour, 75 cents a half hour for the following three hours and then the rate increases to $2.50 per half hour, capping at a maximum of $15.

A limited number of season parking passes — 80 in total — would be available for purchase, according to the proprosed agreement, but passes wouldn’t guarantee a parking space.

Other solutions, such as creating a tiered system for the different marina parking lots, or expanding and encouraging public transport to the marina, have been put forward by the council and residents.

In addition, 205 spaces on Main Street would be managed by Interstate, according to the current contract agreement awaiting approval, but with no additional fees or time limits in place. Currently, there is free parking with a three-hour limit.


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