Paid parking will ruin charm
I am a seventh generation resident living in the Cooperstown area. My great, great, great, great grandfather Bartlett Rogers lived on the corner of River and Main streets by the river bridge. He was the first music director at Christ Church with Father Nash. His son Calvin Rogers was born there in 1810. The following is a paragraph from an article in the story of Cooperstown by Ralph Birdsall, which I think well-summarizes my feelings and others on the paid-parking issue:
“Cooperstown is a village of incomparable charm. There is not the like of it in all America. It has character of its own sufficiently distinctive to prevent it from becoming the leech-like community into which, though the slow commercializing of native self-respect, a summer resort sometimes degenerates, stupidly enduring the winter in order to batten up the pleasures of the rich in summer. Cooperstown is old enough and wise enough to have juster appreciation of lasting values. It has tradition and atmosphere. It is a village that rejoices in the simple virtues of life peculiar to a small community, while its fame as a summer resort annually brings its residents within reach of far influences and wide horizons.”
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Village needs paid parking
Recently, several Main Street Cooperstown merchants filed suit against the village of Cooperstown “asking for a county court judgment ‘annulling, vacating and setting aside as contrary to law’ the on-street paid-parking law that went into affect Memorial Day Weekend.”
We, as local taxpayers and residents, are open to listening to any reasonable argument against paid parking, and we are open to considering any data that suggest or prove that paid parking is a net negative for the merchants. However, we are also open to any reasonable arguments and data that show the benefits of paid parking. We are concerned for the welfare of the merchants; we are also concerned for the welfare of the local community as a whole.