Sebastian Mayor wants review after residents voice parking woes

SEBASTIAN – Sebastian Mayor Jim Hill wants to review parking issues in the waterfront district after several residents have complained about limited space since the Mulligan’s restaurant opened.

Resident Janet Schiefer approached the City Council last week to raise the issue, saying that she and many others who once enjoyed visiting the Yacht Club next door, can no longer do so. “The parking is horrendous,” she said.

Schiefer added that when the City Council approved a parking agreement with Mulligan’s Beach House Bar and Grill, the council did so to the benefit of the business and to the detriment of the residents.

Schiefer asked that the council consider placing signage at the Yacht Club to prohibit restaurant parking.

Residents have also complained that diners park in the spaces directly along the waterfront – a place where residents and visitors alike prefer to park, eat a sack lunch and enjoy the view.

Mayor Hill told Schiefer that he planned to have a meeting with City Manager Al Minner to address the concerns residents have been raising.

In September, the Sebastian City Council approved new rules that allow a business owner, such as Mulligan’s, to pay into a parking fund in lieu of providing for up to half of its parking needs.

Mulligan’s would have needed 72 parking spots on-site in order to be approved for the 170-seat restaurant and 47-slip marina and single-family residence above the eatery.

The site can accommodate 42 parking spaces – leaving 30 unaccounted for.

As part of the new rules, businesses can choose to pay $3,200 per parking spot in lieu of providing for some of the on-site parking needs.

The funds collected from businesses for parking will be used to establish more public parking in the district.

Mulligan’s patrons, and any other business’s customers participating in the parking program, would be allowed to park in any of the public parking places within 500 feet from the establishment.

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