MILLBURN, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – A makeover in Millburn, New Jersey has some people shaking their heads, saying it’s created more problems than solutions.
“I think it’s going to be a problem,” one resident said.
While the new “parklets” on Millburn Avenue near Main Street may be pretty, some say they are taking up precious parking.
“To lose any more parking – I think it’s awful,” said resident Lynne Glantz.
Town officials put in the seating areas Friday morning to help attract more shoppers and diners, but people CBS2’s Reena Roy spoke with claim they’ve done the exact opposite.
“The customers, they always come in and complain like, ‘Oh parking is bad.’ First of all, they can never find parking,” Dunkin Donuts worker Sudani Edmond said.
“I’m very, very loyal to shopping in this town, but it’s been brutal,” Glantz said.
“People are not coming into our town, our businesses have been hurting,” Millburn Township Committee Member Dianne Eglow said.
The parklets are part of a major makeover that started last year. Residents say it was partially completed a few months ago, bringing newly narrowed roads and parallel parking, which town officials installed for increased pedestrian safety.
“The very small center that we had – it feels like they cut it in half,” Glantz said.
“These bump-outs have narrowed our streets, so we’ve lost parking spots. Then they go in and put these parklets in,” Eglow said.
But some people say they don’t have a problem with them. They told Roy the parklets make the town look nice and are a great way to relax.
“I feel like I’m on an island. The palm trees, it’s balmy,” resident Tamara Curvin said.
“It really adds something to downtown, and as far as parking goes, there’s a parking lot back there, there’s parking there and across the street there,” another woman added.
A town spokesperson told CBS2 no one was available to speak on camera. But the town’s website says a third parklet will be installed nearby next week.
While some are also wondering why they were installed so late in the summer, the website says all three parklets will be available to use well into the fall.