Glen Ellyn officials are taking measures heading into the holiday season to address perceptions about a lack of downtown parking.
The village next month plans to open a 45-space commuter parking lot near the intersection of Duane Street and Glenwood Avenue. The new facility will be a commuter lot until 6 p.m. and then be available for customer use.
The central business district already offers eight parking facilities, officials said, not including the 427 spaces on the street.
"The changes address the need," police Chief Phil Norton said Monday. "The perception is that there is not a lot of parking, but when we look at parking inventory, when we inspect during the day, we have plenty of parking."
Earlier this year, the village began to look into potential parking improvements to downtown, focusing on clarifying uses of the Main Street and Pennsylvania Avenue lot behind the fire station.
With approval from the village board on Nov. 12, changes to that lot include realigning sections to improve navigation, adding 10 employee permit spots and nine merchant-leased spots, reducing commuter permits from 54 to 35 due to lack of use, and adjusting signs' language for clarity.
The lot also will include 12 new "customer only" spaces where meters were removed.
"It makes the lot a little easier to understand," Norton said.
In another change the Union Pacific West lot, located southeast of Main Street and Crescent Boulevard, will be open only to customers from 11 a.m. until 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday.
The lot south of Pennsylvania Avenue between Main Street and Forest Avenue, known as "Schock Square," will be available exclusively to customers from 8 a.m. until 6 p.m. on those same days.
As a result of the new Metra lot, and the other parking modifications, the village has created 91 new spaces for customers.
"Commuters have a need, employers have a need, but what drives the economic engine is for customers to find convenient parking to keep their dollars locally," Norton said.