Nothing attracts tourists to Chattanooga and makes locals go downtown on Christmas Eve than this new "Parking Authority" writing tickets to every car on the street that didn't pay the meter on Christmas Eve. I have worked downtown for 20 plus years and have never paid the meter on Christmas Eve. To me this is just a lowdown way for the city to make a little extra cash.
I think this is one of the most petty things and, to top it off, I even asked the guy giving me the ticket what he thought about it.
He said, "I don't agree 100 percent with it, but this is my job and it pays my bills so I do what I am told."
This casts a negative light over the city and it embarrassed me as a citizen.
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Once again, a review of all the changes in parking enforcement rules downtown needs to be reviewed by everyone. Don't count on tradition to determine your actions. The one universal constant is that all things change over time.
In regards to visitors, how would they know the parking enforcement rules? It's actually very easy for everyone involved. Always be prepared to feed the meters. It's a matter of taking an adult approach to life in general. Never assume and be prepared.
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Mr. Ladd is correct about one thing: it IS very easy for everyone involved. I will personally just stop coming downtown for anything. I will no longer visit the Discovery Museum, Aquarium or walk the shops on Northshore. I won't bother going to the galleries or restaurants. That way I won't have to run back to my car every two hours and move it to a new location lest I be towed (remember we can't just add money and continue shopping or dining). I will enjoy the shops in Hixson, Cleveland, Chickamauga, Dayton, and Dalton instead. Longer drive? Yes. But worth it for the lack of hassle every two hours.
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To the usual carpers: Learn how to pay, or go elsewhere. Fine with me.
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I sympathize with Mr. Locke and others about parking rules downtown. Don't think of it as downtown anymore. It is now River City.
If that non-governmental entity decides to take over the bridges, we not only shall be concerned about having the correct change or the special charge card for the new meters, we shall be stymied by the cost of rental of a paddle for our own canoe.