The Village Hall of Great Neck Plaza in the Town...

The Village Hall of Great Neck Plaza in the Town of North Hempstead on May 29, 2013. Credit: JC Cherubini

Great Neck Plaza residents will now be required to pay double for metered village parking and will face additional availability changes, as part of a crackdown on alleged parking abuses.

Starting Wednesday, the fee for all parking meters on streets, lots and garages will increase from 25 cents to 50 cents per hour. The previous rate was in place for more than two decades. This price hike allows residents a new option to pay for half-hour increments.

This is just one of several measures that the village board of trustees voted unanimously in favor of at a September meeting, after a yearlong study of the parking issue. An outside parking expert was consulted and several public meetings were held, a village representative said.

Village officials said the new regulations are an attempt to increase downtown parking turnover and deter merchants from overusing metered parking spaces.

Beyond the changes in metered parking, beginning in January, prices for commuter parking permits in the Plaza Centre garage will increase by $40, from $210 to $250. The number of short-term metered parking spaces will fall from 31 to 20 to allocate for more permit parking. Under these changes, there will be 370 permit parking spots.

Other adjustments include reduced maximum parking limits in the Gussack Plaza outdoor parking lot, with more than half of the 95 parking spaces changing from a designated four-hour to a two-hour limit.

New hours for permit parking will also be implemented at the village's two parking garages on Plaza Centre and Maple Drive: Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Metered parking will be available from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., with a two-hour maximum limit in place. Parking in permit spaces will be free after 5 p.m. on weekdays, and all day on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays.

Fines for violations of the new rules will not increase and code enforcement officials will continue their normal routine checks, a village representative said.

The new regulations will be monitored closely and the village board has pledged to consider subsequent changes if necessary.

"The changes will be reviewed and assessed in subsequent studies by the village's parking consultant to ensure that we're achieving the desired effect," Mayor Jean Celender said.

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