Since the outbreak of COVID in March, the mayor stopped parking fees downtown to keep shoppers coming into businesses. This has continued to benefit Flagstaff businesses, according to Flagstaff Downtown Business Alliance Executive Director Terry Madeksza. People are more inclined to shop when they know that parking is easy and free.

However, the free parking does not benefit everyone. ParkFlag, the city program responsible for downtown parking organization, gets all their profit from parking payments. Because these were discontinued, ParkFlag has had no income, says Interim Manager Gail Brockman.

Luckily, Brockman says ParkFlag had enough money saved up to continue operations without any new revenue. By the time parking payments are reinstated, ParkFlag will have lost at least a year’s worth of revenue.

Free parking downtown expires in March 2021. This is to encourage local shopping during the holiday season.