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No more free Saturday parking in South End and Uptown Charlotte

Charlotte officials say charging for on-street parking in South End and Uptown will increase access to businesses and generate $700,000 in revenue per year.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Charlotte transportation officials announced Friday that drivers will soon have to pay for Saturday on-street parking in Uptown and South End. 

The Charlotte Department of Transportation announced paid street parking will begin Saturday, March 25. CDOT said adding paid parking will give people better access to Uptown and South End businesses by increasing turnover on busy days. 

Paid parking was approved by Charlotte City Council last year. It was supposed to start in September but got pushed back to 2023 to allow further public engagement and assessment of the parking system.

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Mayor Vi Lyles said at the time there are a few reasons why charging for parking is beneficial, including an estimated $700,000 in additional revenue in a single year. She also said this will encourage more people to use public transit. 

"We ought to create the parking so you can go into the city and park, but not for three days at a time," Lyle said. 

Councilman Tarig Bokhari was against the plan, saying Charlotte's public transit isn't strong enough and the plan wasn't thought through before it was passed. Charlotte was recently named one of the worst cities to live in if you don't own a car and depend on mass transit

In addition to adding Saturday paid parking, Charlotte bumped hourly rates for metered spots from $1 to $1.50 per hour. It was the first change in street parking prices since 1997. 

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