The problem on the Downtown Mall is not the lack of access from the north side of the Mall to the south side. It's the increasingly smaller number of parking spaces available to people who want to shop on the Downtown Mall and cannot find a place to park their cars.
The parking garages on Water Street and Market Street do not provide the number of spaces needed for a pedestrian Mall.
Some parking losses:
* the elimination of the lot next to the C & O restaurant,
* the coming elimination of the lot at Second and Water Streets to make room for a multi use building,
* the changing of the two-hour spaces around City Hall to 15-minute or 30-minute parking,
* the amount of on-street parking taken up by trucks delivering things to the Paramount Theater on Market and Third St NE
* the on-street parking around Court Square which has been given to police and sheriff's cars, and
* the three to five to seven blocks of parking taken by Hill and Wood Funeral Home for anywhere from three to eight hours of parking for funerals.
If the City Council could figure out a way to increase on-street parking around the Downtown Mall, a lot of the problems of the businesses on the Downtown Mall would be solved by the increase in customers those businesses would enjoy.
Cross traffic on the Mall is not the answer. The cross traffic at Second Street is just an accident waiting to happen. Many cars do not stop for pedestrian traffic on the Mall, and do not stop for the "No Turns on Red" signs at Market Street. Do we need a fatal accident on the Mall to prove the point?