Patchogue Mayor Paul Pontieri says the village is making progress in its quest to build a parking garage to better serve residents, employees and visitors alike.
Ideally, he said, village and county leaders would work together to build a 1- or 2-deck garage on the county’s 6th District Court property on West Main Street near West Avenue.
Talks with the county have been ongoing, Pontieri said.
And the mayor is hopeful.
“Right now, I think that’s the perfect location,” he said. “If you take Waze or any of the GPS apps to Patchogue, that’s where they lead you, to West Avenue.
“If it doesn’t work [behind the courthouse] we’ll find another place to do it,” Pontieri said.
The goal is to create an additional 300 parking spaces with the garage. The construction and maintenance would be paid for through the village’s meter program.
Parking, especially on Friday and Saturday nights, has become an issue in the village, which has experienced rapid growth in restaurants especially in recent years. Last year, GreaterPatchogue ran a three-part series on parking in Patchogue.
One main cause for the parking problems on weekend nights and other nights, business and village leaders told us, was the sheer number of employees at the local restaurants.
The dry spaces that preceded the restaurants typically had far less workers.
“We’re at a critical point in the village with parking,” Pontieri said this week. “We keep talking about the issue of employee parking, but without employee parking the businesses downtown can’t prosper. We have to figure out ways to create enough parking for employees and the general public, so everybody can just park where they need to park.”
When asked when he could envision work starting on a garage, Pontieri said “as soon as possible.”
Top: The parking lot between Church Street and West Main Street in 2017. (file photo)