Downtown Improvement Board

Downtown Improvement Board

Do you have issues when it comes to parking in downtown Pensacola? You’re not alone, according to a new study from the University of West Florida’s Haas Business Center. 

Researchers gathered the data between May 18-June 8. The margin of error is four percentage points and  the survey was a “multi-modal” survey – that is, using a number of methods -- with some help from the Downtown Improvement Board.

Downtown Improvement Board

Three months after the start of a new parking system in downtown Pensacola, the Downtown Improvement Board’s Executive Director is stepping down.

Curt Morse announced his resignation at Tuesday's DIB meeting but gave no reason why. Chairman John Peacock says Morse actually submitted his resignation on June 6 and was placed on administrative leave for his final month on the job.

Downtown Improvement Board

First, it was Spanish foodways, highlighting the discovery of the 1559 Luna Settlement.

This year’s Pensacola Repast dinner, held last month by the Downtown Improvement Board, explored the multicultural influences of what was cooking here two centuries ago, during the Early American period in the 1800’s.

Dave Dunwoody, WUWF Public Media

In downtown Pensacola, a new digital parking system is up and running, using both traditional and higher tech payment methods.

New Orleans-based Premium Parking’s digital management platform covers on-street, public lots and parking garages throughout the 39-block downtown area.

“It’s a great opportunity for us to show what sort of modern approach to parking management can do for a municipality, both on-street and off-street to make parking simpler and more efficient,” said Premium President Ben Montgomery.

Visit Florida

A new plan from Pensacola’s Downtown Improvement Board offers, among other things , a bicycle share program scheduled to take effect next spring.

South Carolina-based Gotcha Bikes Company will provide the two-wheelers. DIB Executive Director Curt Morse says the program will be similar to what they provide at several universities.

“Auburn, Clemson, Ole Miss; lots of universities not only here in the South but across the country,” Morse said. “And now they’ve branched out into some of the smaller municipalities. Certainly, Pensacola kind of falls under that.”

Moto Electric Vehicles

The plug has been pulled on a plan to use electric trolleys in downtown Pensacola this summer. But that’s not necessarily the end of the line.

A half-dozen shuttles borrowed from Gulf Islands National Seashore were to have served the 39-block downtown area.

“Since the ferry service has been delayed a year, until spring 2018, we didn’t want those trams to just sit there unutilized. So we did reach out to the City of Pensacola, to see if they might have a need or an interest,” said GINS Director Dan Brown.

Moto Electric Vehicles

Visitors to downtown Pensacola could be able to park and ride later this month, thanks to six new electric trolleys from Gulf Island National Seashore.

With the park’s ferry service in limbo the new electric trolleys, each consisting of motor and trailer units, are being loaned to the City of Pensacola. Each vehicle can hold 27 passengers.

Bob Barrett / WUWF News

  It was back in April when the Downtown Improvement Board announced it would end sponsorship of the popular monthly street party and the final Gallery Night would be September 16. At the time, John Peacock, the Chairman of the DIB left the door open for someone else to take over the event saying "If the bars and restaurants for example wanted to put on a street party, there are avenues to do that."

Bob Barrett / WUWF News

Unless a new sponsor steps forward to take charge of the event, the monthly Gallery Night celebrations in downtown Pensacola will be coming to an end this fall. 

 

  In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses the impact of the Downtown Improvement Board’s announcement that Gallery Night and the Pelican Drop are ending, the re-instating of EDATES and a new medical facility coming to Pace.

 

In a surprise announcement, The DIB announced that the popular downtown Pensacola Gallery Nights will end in September. The DIB said that they would be using their funds on other projects.

 

There is a lot of construction and change and growth in downtown Pensacola right now. What there isn’t a lot of is parking, and that continues to be a problem. Last December the city of Pensacola commissioned a study from the West Florida Regional Planning Council called Pensacola Parking Strategies as a Catalyst for Economic Growth. Jill Lavender is Special Projects Coordinator for the council and is the team leader for the study. She says they are going to first look at the current supply and then predict the future demand of parking downtown.

Photo via Flickr//Gregory Moines

Rules for using the roughly 6,000 parking spaces in downtown Pensacola are undergoing a makeover by the Downtown Improvement Board.

DIB Director Ron Butlin says that, along with growth and busier times in the downtown area are leading them to take another look at the big parking picture, and ways to make things better. The primary change is extending the two-hour time limit on Palafox from 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m.

Gallery Night Moves To Monthly Events For 2014

Jan 16, 2014
Downtown Improvement Board

In 2014, Gallery Night will become a monthly event in Downtown Penascola. WUWF’s Katya Ivanov reports that attendees can expect more themed events than in the past. In previous years, Gallery Night took place seven times a year. Ron Butlin is executive director of the Downtown Improvement Board.