"This is a good problem to have," said Mayor Billy Nowell at this month's aldermen meeting.
Eric Kelly, marketing and development manager at Huerta Construction, asked for the elimination of three parking spots in front of the hotel driveway, which faces Sharpe Avenue and one of the planters.
"This is where the original curb cutout was," said Kelly, who added residents of the hotel would be parking in the back of the building.
Kelly said removal of the planter would add back a parking space.
He also asked the board to consider putting a two-hour parking limit in place for customers downtown, as parking was in short supply. And with the GRAMMY Museum soon to be built more people would be coming to Cleveland.
Kelly said some people come in and park all day, "I'm not saying having a parking enforcer but how about some signs that say 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday through Friday.
"We're going to tell everyone buying a condo, please don’t park in the front. But you never know, someone's boyfriend picks them up or girlfriend, and they takeoff for Memphis. They've taken up a spot in front of someone's store all day long," said Raymond Huerta, developer and owner of the hotel.
"I think Oxford has that," said Alderman Danny Abraham.
"I think in Oxford they come along and mark cars," said Alderman Kirkham Povall. "They come back and if it's still there they give them a ticket."
"Indianola's gone to it and they seem to like it," said Abraham.
"There have been a lot of changes downtown," said Alderman Gary Gainspoletti. "Last Wednesday I had to park behind this building (city hall) to go eat over here on Cotton Row."
Huerta and officials discussed public parking behind Cotton Row and around Delta Wholesale, then Alderman Paul Janoush made a motion to eliminate three parking spots in front of the hotel "but I don't want you tearing up the planter."
Police Chief Buster Bingham was asked about downtown and said there were issues especially around times like Octoberfest.
"During the regular business hours, business owners park in front of the stores or in front of someone else's store and it's a problem," he said.
"We'd need to pick up patrolling," said Abraham.
"We patrol the area but what we'd have to do is designate someone to go down through there and mark the cars," said Bingham adding that someone would have to be hired for that position.
Business owner Cathy Daniels addressed the board to say she had no problem with the parking time limit or the removal of the parking spots but she asked that the two planters be removed to add parking to the block.
"There are 18 spots for six business and if you remove three that's only 15 spots for the block," she said. "Give us back the parking."
"We've got to allow the opening or we're creating more of a problem," said Janoush, who added the city would like to have time to research the removal of the planters and the time limits.
On another parking issue, representatives from Fleming Lumber said they are expanding the facility and needed more customer parking in front of the building.
Brett Moorman, director of community development, said Fleming Lumber has what is considered on-street parking which was grandfathered in when changes were made to zoning, but adding spots would be considered prohibited under city statute.
Moorman said he'd like to have the issue tabled and work with Fleming and the planning commission to come up with a helpful solution to the issue.