April 04, 2013 - 1:44 PM
By Julie Whittet
Don't bother feeding the meter this Saturday when visiting downtown Kelowna. If you're out meeting friends for brunch, browsing the shops or checking out the newly paved Bernard Avenue, parking is on the City.
As part of the Small Shop Saturdays initiative, April 6th will be the first of three free-parking Saturdays this year. The initiative is geared to bring more visitors to local businesses in the downtown area.
While parking will be free, the city reminds people that posted time limits still apply, to ensure everyone gets a spot.
Local businesses have been waiting patiently throughout the re-construction of Bernard Avenue, which started September 2012. As expected, the construction process has been tough for some.
Ragen Hall, who manages clothing store Blonde, says it can be difficult for her customers to find parking near the store, and says the switch from angle to parallel parking reduces the spots available.
“A lot of my good friends say they won't be visiting until June, until construction is done," Hall said.
Down the street at Picture Perfect & Perpetual Blooms, store manager Linda Winnick is excited to see construction moving along swiftly.
“They've already put one layer of pavement down, so that's a great sign! We're excited about that.”
Winnick expects the sidewalks to be going in soon, and says the street will be opened up for pedestrians who can enter the shops through temporary pathways.
“With this happening and the pier going in, and they're talking about doing renos in the park as well, downtown is really going to be active," Winnick said. "It should be free parking every Saturday!”
To contact the reporter for this story, email Julie Whittet at email@example.com or call (250)718-0428.
Phase 2 of the Bernard Avenue revitalization is underway with street paving.
(JULIE WHITTET /InfoTel Multimedia)
News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2013