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Harder Parking

It’s 10 a.m., on a weekday.

Hoping to get an early start on shopping, you head downtown. You pull into the Parker Harding lot — but it’s already nearly full.

A great sign of Westport’s booming retail economy?

No. A distressing sign that employees are taking advantage of free all-day parking.

The decision during COVID to lift limits seemed wise. Many stores were closed, or on reduced hours. Why not make things easier on the folks we needed?

Now though — as the holiday season nears — parking needs have changed.

Parker Harding Plaza

A longtime (and very frustrated) Westporter writes: “All day long, the cars just sit there. There’s no room for anyone except the employees. Why can’t they park in other lots and walk a couple of blocks, like they used to?”

Why can’t shoppers do the same? you may ask.

The answer is: Because we’re supposed to make shopping attractive and easy.

The nickname for Parker Harder is “Harder Parking.” Seems like downtown employees — and their employers — make it even more so.

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