Parking Changes in Downtown Monticello

City officials say with the increased traffic, backing out of a parking spot can be dangerous business.

Traffic along the courthouse square in Monticello is always busy with parking, a hassle of its own.

Those who live and shop in the area say while finding a place to park can be a bear, pulling out of a parking spot is just as stressful.

"There is just a lot of congestion in the area. So really, there is no parking. We definitely need something. Some different kind of structure here,” explains Monticello resident Kimberly Spivey.

For the next few days, crews contracted by the Florida Department of Transportation will be re-striping parking spaces around the square.

Spaces will change from 60 and 45 degree angles, to 30 degree angles.

"If your vehicle was long enough, you actually had to cross the double yellow line, which in Florida is against the law, and you also had to look at traffic in both directions, which is very hard,” explains Steven Rissman, of the Community Traffic Safety Team.

"It's been needed for quite a while, and I feel like it's going to make a great improvement on parking in the downtown area,” resident Darlene O’Brien says.

While the safety benefits quickly add up, the changes also mean some businesses may lose a few parking spaces.

"We have a lot of contractors who need to come in and out really quickly, so we hate to lose the parking spaces, but there is a trade off here,” adds Trisha Wirick, owner of Edenfield Hardware.

Work on the parking spaces should wrap up in about a week.

The changes come at the request of the city of Monticello and Jefferson County’s Community Traffic Safety Team.