CLEARWATER — The recent $1 an hour increase at North Beach Parking Plaza brings Clearwater in line with what other Florida beach towns charge for off-street parking.
That's according to Mark Yedinak, the man in charge of the city's parking facilities. The city raised the price of one hour of parking at the plaza from $2 to $3 and raised the cost of all-day parking from $20 to $30.
Yedinak, Clearwater's parking system manager, said he researched what other Florida beach towns charge before raising rates at the plaza, which has more than 700 parking spaces.
"We wanted to set our rates more in line with other tourist destinations in Florida," Yedinak said.
His staff put together a two-page spreadsheet from rates posted on websites belonging to Coral Gables, Deerfield Beach, Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Miami and other beach cities.
Loris Mueller and his friend Megan Turgeon, visiting from Loudoun County, Va., recently paid the $3 hourly rate for parking at North Beach Parking Plaza.
"We like the convenience of parking close to the beach and shops, so $3 doesn't seem unreasonable," Turgeon said as the two emerged from the garage at 490 Poinsettia Ave.
Clearwater did not raise its $80 a month permit for employees.