Amid parking hassles, locals stay positive for St. Patrick’s Day Festival

Parking hassles for St. Patrick's Festival

SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - It’s go-time for City of Savannah Parking Services.

Signs are marking the parade route, because starting Saturday morning, it will be game time for towing companies, too. According to Rhonda Gordon with Gordon’s Towing Service, this is one of their busiest weekends of the year.

“Police are clearing the parade route at 6 a.m. If your vehicle is on the parade route, it’s going to be towed,” Gordon said.

Local Drew Ferguson told WTOC his strategy is to use UBER or LYFT for the weekend, no matter how much it costs. He doesn’t want to risk a ticket or worse, a tow.

“Honestly, there are a lot of spots where it’s not super clear where you can and can’t park," Ferguson said. "It’s something people need to be super aware of.”

Despite the hundreds of thousands people coming into the city, other locals say the parking doesn’t pose much of an issue for them.

“Obviously, it’s hard to find a free parking space here. In some ways, that is how a city is designed," Harrison Scott Key, 15-year-resident said. "Cars move and other cars move in, and that’s another reason I started riding a bike.”

“For St. Patrick’s Day, I tend not to move [my car], so it’s not an issue for me really,” Cliff Padgett said.

Along with bars and restaurants, it’s a huge weekend for towers. Each tow from the parade route costs a car owner $125 plus $15 a day. Towers will stay busy getting parked cars off the parade route and staging area. They’ll tow cars parked on private property, car crashes, and unfortunately, DUIs. Instead of towing your car after the fact, the Gordon’s say they’d much rather you pay the expensive cab to get home.

“If you are paying $75 local to get you and your car home, it’s a lot cheaper than a DUI, and it’s certainly better than the alternative,” Gordon said.

Savannah Police Chief Roy Minter is overseeing roll call Friday afternoon.

“I mean, they’ve done this year after year after year. People keep asking me, ‘Am I ready?,' and I don’t know what ready looks like for me right now, but I know what ready looks like for them, so I’m going to be dependent upon them for them to continue to do what they’ve done year after year.”

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