DURHAM, North Carolina (WTVD) --Durham businesses are bracing for hundreds of free parking spots downtown to be converted to metered spots.
"Everybody's stressed about it because we know it's coming," said Dame's Chicken and Waffles manager Teresa Ingram.
Ingram believes the changes are going to compound parking problems.
"Our reviews online, most of our complaints are parking," Ingram explained.
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She experiences the daily struggle of finding parking downtown and often sees employees fighting over free spots.
"They will have to move their car pretty often, or risk getting towed," she mused.
On Feb. 27, the city will begin charging $1.50 per hour at approximately 1,000 parking spaces. Durham workers are installing new signs this week.
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The city hopes the meters will inspire folks to get in and out, allowing more people to park and experience downtown.
"I understand the growth, so it's just a part of a growing downtown. It's actually a deal compared to other downtowns, but I'm going to miss my free parking," offered Durham resident Yolanda Brown.
"We really can't prepare for it. We don't have anywhere to go," said Ingram.
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