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Town Square Parking Worries Grow With Trader Joe’s Opening

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SOUTHLAKE (CBS 11 NEWS) – Parking is considered prime real estate around Southlake’s Town Square.

On a weekend some shoppers say they’ve waited up to 15 minutes if not longer for a spot.

“I think it’s insane,” shopper Barbi Lucente said, adding, “On the weekends it’s crazy over here.”

Some shoppers tell CBS 11 News that they worry, now with Trader Joe’s moving in, spaces will be harder to come by and traffic will become an even bigger nightmare.

Trader Joe’s is slated to open in the fall.

“You drive around until you find a spot or you have to go to one of the parking garages kind of far away and walk,” said shopper Susan Jolley. “It can take an extra 10 minutes.”

Officials with the city of Southlake say some relief is coming. A two-deck parking garage will be attached to Trader Joe’s and that means more than 70 parking spaces will be added to the area, in addition to parking in front of the store.

“The parking deck will be completed first,” explained project manager Hugh Sanford. “We’ll finalize that permit, pull some of our fence down, [and] open up some more parking while we finish.”

Once the store is open Southlake police will have extra officers on hand helping with traffic congestion.

“We want people to be able to get in and out of places very easily,” Southlake police Assistant Chief James Brandon asserted. “That comes down to things like clearing accident scenes as quickly as we can [and] seeing if we can get things moved off the road quicker.”

The city is also working on the timing of traffic signals, to move cars faster through the area.

Sanford said there is one other thing that will be a big help to shoppers – Trader Joe’s will have direct access from the main road, instead of shoppers having to move through the Town Square.

(©2014 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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