Business owners share concerns about 6th and Jersey parking lot - Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Business owners share concerns about 6th and Jersey parking lot



Some local business owners are worried too much money is being spent on features to a renovated parking lot that really aren't needed.

A petition is being circulated around downtown Quincy, stating that the businesses do not agree with spending more money to put trees and fencing around the parking lot at 6th and Jersey.


"The more I dug, the madder I got." 

Vacuum Clinic owner Sam Franklyn says he's been spending a lot of time digging for information on the 6th and Jersey parking lot, and he doesn't like what he sees.

"The amount of money that is being spent that is not necessary."

City planner Chuck Bevelheimer disagrees - he says the cost is not an issue with this project. He said it was estimated to be $380,000, and it came out well below that - at $337,000.  And that's not general revenue money  - it's set to be paid for by TIF funds.

"The money for a TIF district comes from improvements made within that district, so the money that comes from taxpayers within the district pays for the improvements. The general population does not pay for TIF projects," Bevelheimer explains. 

But even so, Franklyn says, some of the plans for the project are too much. He mainly points out a rod iron fence that will surround the lot, and spending several thousand dollars on 21 trees. He believes there should be cheaper options.

"Isn't Quincy the Dogwood City? I called up on my own and found out what Dogwood trees would cost. You can pay 80 dollars anywhere up to 200 dollars. If you pay 200 dollars for them and put nine trees in there, you and I can add that up real quick and that's 1800 dollars. That's a whole lot better than over eight thousand dollars," said Franklyn. 

But Bevelheimer says some features are mandatory under city code,  so that's what they're going to do.

"We have to live up to the same standards that a private developer has to, and I think it's unfair if we tell a developer that he has to build a parking lot to a certain standard, and then we build a parking lot to a lower standard. To me, that's unreasonable," says Bevelheimer.

This project - and the established budget for it - was passed by city council earlier this year, and Bevelheimer says nothing has changed from the original plan. So he says crews will move forward as the current plan states.



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