Looking to improve parking in Huntington Village, the Huntington Town Board approved a pilot program Tuesday to test free valet parking in one of the Town municipal lots.
At Tuesday’s meeting, the Town Board green-lit the program and the signing of a contract with LAZ Parking New York/New Jersey to run the operation. The program will be tested in the lot south of Main Street between New and Green Streets.
It will be jointly funded by the Town, the Town of Huntington Economic Development Corp., the Huntington Village Business Improvement District and the Huntington Township Chamber of Commerce. These entities are part of a consortium Supervisor Frank P. Petrone formed in 2013 to explore Village parking options.
“All of us in the consortium remain committed to identifying and implementing a variety of measures to improve the parking situation in the Village,” Petrone said, in a statement.
According to the Town, valet parking could increase the capacity of the lot, which currently has 215 spaces, by as much as 40 percent. Details of the program are being finalized, including the days and times valet parking would be available. Initially, only a portion of the lot will be set aside for valet parking, with the possibility of expanding the area if demand warrants.
“Given what the experts have said about the potential to increase capacity, valet parking is an option certainly worth testing,” Petrone said.
The pilot program is expected to begin in early summer.
The initiative is part of what the Town calls “a series of measures implemented in response to a study the consortium commissioned last year.”
In April, the Town activated multi-space parking pay stations on Main Street and New York Avenue; changed the hours for which metered parking is active, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Monday-Saturday); designated a primary and secondary metered parking zone, with different per-hour parking rates ($1 an hour for the primary zone, 50 cents an hour for the secondary zone); and increased to three hours in the maximum a vehicle can remain parked at a spot.The Town also has prepared a brochure, available at participating merchants in the Village and on the Town’s website. The brochure includes a summary of the changes, directions on using the multi-space meters and a map of municipal parking lots in the Village.