FALLS CHURCH, Va. - We all know what it's like to circle around the block looking for parking. Now, it's becoming more common and frustrating experience at a Northern Virginia community where business is booming.
Since Northside Social in Falls Church opened up for business two months ago, towing has drastically been up in this area. There are also more signs warning patrons about being towed. We counted more than a dozen of them on Park Avenue alone.
It turns out the trendy coffee and wine shop has no designated parking for customers except for one spot reserved for the disabled.
“Monday through Friday, it’s okay, but after 5 p.m., it’s pretty crowded,” said customer Semi Park. “I wish they had more parking spots for the cafe area so we can come out more often.”
“I’m willing to walk a few blocks and park to go where I need to be,” said Christine Nowroozi. “Hopefully we will find some better solutions in the future.”
Northside Social is just one of several businesses in the area that have transformed existing structures in the neighborhood. The business resides in a historic building that the city once described as an eyesore.
However, parking is scarce in the area and more than 100 vehicles have been reportedly towed in recent months. The City of Falls Church’s towing records indicate that number is up compared to years past by nearly ten times the amount.
Pete’s Towing, which has several signs in the area, said they are just doing their job.
People who live and work in the area all agree more parking is needed.
“There is a lot of businesses in here like dentists and doctors that need those spots, so those fill up pretty quickly normally,” said Nick Gatz.
“It’s a problem,” said City of Falls Church spokesperson Susan Finarelli. “We are looking at possibly more on-street parking around there and possibly making the public parking spots bright colors so that everyone knows exactly where they can park in those private lots. Just trying to make it easier for everyone.”
The city said there is a nearby parking garage a few blocks away, but it is only available to the public on the weekends.
Northside Social’s manager said she is working with nearby businesses and the city for a solution.