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New Bern officials working on downtown parking concerns

New Bern city officials are working to find a solution, starting with possibly adding new parking spaces to the area. (Greg Payne, NewsChannel 12 photo)

At times, the battle for parking in downtown New Bern can be ...

"Sometimes, it can seem like a litlte bit of a challenge," said Bill Wheeler, owner of Nautical Wheelers.

But Wheeler said, luckily for his business Nautical Wheelers on Craven Street, parking isn't necessarily bad.

"Most days our customers can get within 60 or 80 feet of the front door and park," Wheeler said.

Other downtown businesses are not as lucky. That's why city officials are working to find a solution, starting with possibly adding new parking spaces to the area.

We spoke with one business owner and he said he definitely won't complain about additional parking in the city of new Bern but his one concern is whether those additional parking spaces will lead to extra cost for his customers.

"In the past, with more parking, there's usually been tied to paid parking meters or a parking deck and I have concerns and customers have concerns about that," Wheeler said.

For now, city officials are not considering meter parking, instead enforcing a two-hour limit.

"If you really look at the ordinance of New Bern there are two hour parking ordinances that are already in place they just haven't been enforced," Wheeler said.

If approved, people who park past the two-hour limit will be charged $25. If that's not paid, the fine would be doubled. Officials are working to form an ordinance based on the parking committee and aldermen's suggestions. They hope to vote on it at next month's meeting.

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