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First year beach parking fees in Muskegon top $500K

The City of Muskegon collected about $510,000 in parking fees, and more money from unpaid parking tickets could send that number even higher.

MUSKEGON, Mich. — City leaders in Muskegon are celebrating the success of its paid parking program at Pere Marquette Park, Kruse Park, Margaret Drake Elliott Park and Harbour Towne Beach.

Starting this year the city collects daily parking fees at those city parks from Memorial Day to Sept. 15th. 

In year one the city collected about $510,000, according to Muskegon Planning Director Mike Franzak.

"And we still have some money coming in from parking tickets as well," said Franzak.

Implementation of the paid parking program cost the city around $145,000.

"We paid that back within about the first month or so," said Franzak.

The city charges $7 to park on Saturdays and $5 for other days of the week. Season passes cost $20, and city residents receive a free season pass.

Parking kiosk receipts show the beach can be busy at all times of the day.

"People just come all day long," said Franzak. "From the morning, it starts to pick up in the afternoon, and then goes all the way until about sunset."

Parking fees will be used to cover the cost of maintaining the parks and beach. Some years expenses run around $500,000.

City leaders have begun looking for ways to add additional parking spaces at the beach in 2021 and have hopes parking fee collections grow next year. 

"And we get maybe some better compliance with people understanding the rules better," said Franzak.

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