Jan 162010
Authors: Kirsten Silveira

Parking in Old Town last night could’ve cost you a pretty penny if you didn’t move your car in time for snow removal.

Snow removal operations on roads north of campus and throughout Downtown were set to begin at 11:30 p.m. Tuesday night and run until 7 a.m. this morning.

From midnight to 3 a.m., vehicles in the way of plowing Downtown were to be relocated, but after 3 a.m., they were towed at the owner’s expense, said Lonnie Welborn, administrative support for the city’s Streets Department, in a phone interview Tuesday.

“The signage Downtown doesn’t allow us to tow until three,” Welborn said, adding that the parking closures were the first since early in 2007.

Three flat surface parking lots were open for parking. They were located on:

Chestnut Street,

Jefferson Street, and

the corner of Oak and Remington Streets.

In response to complaints about road conditions, city officials said they gave Downtown businesses and homeowners in the area 24-hour notice of the closure, informed local radio stations and posted live updates on Twitter.

However, manager of Coopersmith’s Pub Chris O’mara said his business hadn’t received the news before the closure, but because the restaurant closes at 11 p.m. Sunday through Wednesday, he didn’t think the snow removal would affect business. The pool hall, which closed at 1 p.m., could lose customers, he said, earlier Tuesday.

Washington’s Sports Bar and Grill owner Megan Belcher said she too wasn’t aware of the closure prior to plowing.

“I’m glad they picked a Tuesday rather than like a Thursday, Friday or Saturday,” Belcher said.

While she said the recent snowstorm hasn’t affected business so far, Surfside 7 Cafe bartender Julie Bruntz

said she’s seen a significant decrease in customers since the snow started flying.

“People just don’t come out when it’s cold,” Bruntz said.

Senior Reporter Kirsten Silveira can be reached at news@collegian.com.

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