GRAND HAVEN, Mich. — Parking is a common complaint in Grand Haven and City Manager Pat McGinnis says the parking problem has driven business away.

"We're not seeing the level of private investment that you would expect to see, why not, parking, how do you solve it, capitol can also solve that, so one possibility is to charge for parking," says McGinnis.

The idea being discussed is to move to a paid parking model for all of downtown Grand Haven and the waterfront between May and September. The fee would be $1 to $2 per hour.

"It will kill our local businesses downtown...the people who stop in and want to run into the coffee shop, run to grab a sandwich, they're gonna pay two bucks when they grab a cup of coffee, it's not gonna happen," says Rick Grasman, who's worked in downtown Grand Haven for three years.

City leaders say a parking app would allow customers to not be charged if they park less than 15 minutes. Business owner Sharon Beam says she is willing to explore the idea.

"I really do believe as we move forward with the cost of things going up, more and more communities are going to charge for parking," says Beam.

No final decisions have been made and public hearings would have to be held in order to advance. If the move to paid parking does take place, it's unlikely to happen this year.

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