Emerald Isle Pay-To-Park To Likely Continue

Emerald Isle city officials say their experiment to charge visitors for parking was successful, and will likely make a comeback in 2012.

Guests to the city's beaches paid $10 to park in public access parking lots. Town Manager Frank Rush says the town collected about $110,000 in regional access parking fees this summer. Rush says the money collected was used just for amenities and services at the beach, including new lifeguard services.

The town will review the pay-to-park program and may make adjustments, but Rush says it is likely visitors will have to pay to park in Emerald Isle each summer from here on out.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by ryan Location: havelock on Oct 4, 2011 at 07:52 AM
    Maybe this comment won't get hacked by the so called Jounrnalist that run this thing.... I didn't go to AB or EI this year specifically because of the parking situations. I did go to Fort Macon however. Question: How can a "Pay to Park" test fail?
  • by onslow resident Location: swansboro on Oct 4, 2011 at 07:30 AM
    Emerald Isle didn't get my money this summer. I used to go to the beach at EI every weekend and would spend money in the shops and resturants but since they started charging for parking I have not been back and won't go back as long as they are charging for parking. I'd be willing to bet that most of the money they made was from tourist, not the locals. Everyone I know stopped going to EI this summer.
  • by Steve Location: Chocowinity on Oct 4, 2011 at 06:18 AM
    We didn't go to EI this year because of it. Nags Head got our dollars.
  • by Anonymous on Oct 4, 2011 at 06:11 AM
    I dont mind the paying to park at Emerald Isle or Atlantic Beach but if we are going to have to pay could they atleast make more parking spaces at AB. The two little lots they have are full before 11am on the weekends.
  • by 250 Location: Jax on Oct 4, 2011 at 03:43 AM
    I agree with both the first comments. EI " " secure poarking and lifeguarding. WOW WE! A lifeguard sitting on a 12' tower is not going to be "in" the surf when a 8-12 year old is bitten by the shark. Beaches should be "swim at your own risk" "F R E E". I would be willing to bet that even before rescue was started that at least 12 cell phones will have dialed 911. SOOOO I ask who really is the "lifeguard" at the "public beach"? The public!
  • by Bill Location: Greenville on Oct 4, 2011 at 03:38 AM
    Emerald Isle did the right thing by putting part of the cost of a parking space on the person who uses it. A couple of things you should know about parking: 1) Charging for parking is one of best ways to control it; 2) There is no free parking; somebody (the govt. with your tax dollars; the person who uses the space; businesses, industries, etc., who pay dearly to construct, maintain and control their parking.
    • reply
      by Wharf Rat on Oct 4, 2011 at 05:42 AM in reply to Bill
      So, restaurants, hospitals, grocery stores, shopping malls,etc., etc. should start charging for parking???
      • reply
        by Anonymous on Oct 4, 2011 at 07:34 AM in reply to Wharf Rat
        They all do charge for parking and have forever. The cost of parking is folded into the cost of the goods or services they sell.
        • reply
          by Wharf Rat on Oct 4, 2011 at 10:14 AM in reply to
          Exactly my point. I`ve never seen "parking---$10.00" on a Food Lion receipt. At least they rob us quietly.
    • reply
      by Crystal Coast Resident on Oct 4, 2011 at 07:30 AM in reply to Bill
      All this talk about needing money to offset the supposed "costs" of maintaining parking is nonsense. If you lived here, like I do, you'd know that all the beach communities (EI, PKS, AB) are NOTORIOUS at wasting their money. While other communities are cutting back on spending, these beach communities are spending it like they won the lottery. And if they have their way, there will be even fewer parking stalls and even higher fees to park there. Just watch and see. It's in the works.
    • reply
      by 250 on Oct 4, 2011 at 07:49 AM in reply to Bill
      Paying a "cover charge" at the local nite spots does put an end to shooting or violence, and I can take my honey out knowing I am completely safe huh? HAHA Tell me another good one.
    • reply
      by ryan on Oct 4, 2011 at 07:55 AM in reply to Bill
      Bill, Your comments have some merit, if you excuse the millions in tourism money driven into coastal economies. Atlantic Beach, when preaparing their charge for parking program, fully admitted that upkeep of the parking lot was to cost approximately 20% of the expected revenue of the lot itself. So, where does that 80% profit go? Control parking? Why would you control it? to DISCOURAGE tourism on the coast? Great idea!
  • by Harry Location: Goldsboro on Oct 4, 2011 at 02:34 AM
    Boycott Emerald Isle!
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Oct 4, 2011 at 01:20 PM in reply to Harry
      ya know you can just park some where else or rent a house
      • reply
        by Harry on Oct 4, 2011 at 03:36 PM in reply to
        Parking Fees like taxes grow like any other infection. It is only a matter of time before the local politicians decide to add a fee on to local rents for cottages to cover the individual line item of "Tourist Residential Parking". Giving a politician the ability to impose a tax, fee or penalty is like allowing the Boston Strangler to massage your throat.
  • by Crystal Coast Resident Location: The other side of the bridge on Oct 4, 2011 at 02:05 AM
    Well that sucks. Rich people taking advantage of normal working joes. I didn't go to EI this summer, guess I'll avoid it again next year as well.
    • reply
      by Lifeguard on EI on Oct 4, 2011 at 07:14 PM in reply to Crystal Coast Resident
      Just so you know I was a lifeguard on the beach this summer at EI. I had six water rescues, 4 which would have been possibly fatal. For you people who complain about the money think about your safety, if the time comes when you are in trouble you will want the help. Is it not worth the money on a weekend?
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