Archive for Wednesday, August 4, 1999


August 4, 1999


People who shop or work at the Lawrence Riverfront Plaza soon will be able to park there for free.

Lawrence city commissioners approved a new parking agreement Tuesday night that allows two-hour free parking on the top level of the city-owned garage and $1 per-visit parking on the bottom level.

The agreement takes effect Sept. 1.

It requires Riverfront L.L.C., the new owners of the mall, to pay the city $22,560 a year for the purchase of 235 non-exclusive parking permits for the lower level. The city also can collect $1 per visit from anybody who parks on the lower level but does not have an annual permit.

Meanwhile, the 250 spaces on the upper level will have free two-hour parking, although the city can issue tickets and collect fines from people who violate the time limit.

In addition, the city will charge the mall a "common area parking fee" of 25 cents per square foot of leased space for any tenant who moves into the mall after Sept. 1 or any existing tenant other than the city who expands the amount of space it rents.

Bill Newsome, a partner in Riverfront L.L.C., said the new owners considered establishing free parking as a key to attracting retail shoppers and, as a result, new retail tenants. He said a little more than a third of the leasable space at the mall is vacant.

The mall's partnership includes members of the Simons family, which owns the Journal-World.

-- Peter Hancock's phone message number is 832-7144. His e-mail address is

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