MUSKEGON, Mich. (WOOD) — City officials in Muskegon say they accumulated an unexpected amount of money from paid parking at beaches in the first year of the paid parking program.
The season for which visitors have to pay to park at the beach is now over and the numbers are in. The city only expected to bring in $120,000 in parking revenue this summer but they more than quadrupled that — making $478,000 from beach parking payments alone.
The city brought in an additional $32,000 from area boat launches.
These totals all came from Pere Marquette, Kruse, Bronson Park and the Muskegon Lake Beach parking.
Muskegon officials are thinking about using the money to develop other area parks and add more parking to the beaches.
“This first year went great,” Muskegon Planning Director Mike Frank said. “We earned a lot more money than we really anticipated. It was kind of hard to anticipate from the limited data of how many customers we were going to get, but we were pleasantly surprised by the final outcome.”
The city sold more than 35,000 day passes at beaches since Memorial Day and 8,800 season passes.
The city decided back in February to begin charging nonresidents for season parking passes or to park their car at the beach for the day. Residents of the city have remained free of charge.