UPDATED: Spat Over SunTrust Parking Spaces Could Lead To Booting Of Vehicles
Bank customers complain of spaces being hogged for non-SunTrust business.
Remember last year's parking lot booting scandal that had East Atlanta Villagers and visitors fuming?
Well, get ready for its sequel, the return of the boot.
This time, it's the parking lot behind the SunTrust Banks building at the corner Flat Shoals and Glenwood avenues.
The complaints stem from SunTrust Banks Inc., which says its customers have been inconvenienced from motorists who park in spots marked for bank patrons.
"We’ve been fielding numerous complaints from clients about the availability of the designated parking spaces provided per our lease agreement and conveyed those concerns to our landlord to address the issue," SunTrust spokesman Hugh Suhr told East Atlanta Patch.
Speaking at the Feb. 14 meeting of the East Atlanta Community Association, Edward Gilgor, chairman of Neighborhood Planning Unit-W, said the property owner has authorized booting of cars that take up the designated bank spots during the day.
As a compromise — for now at least — no booting of cars will occur on weekdays between 6 p.m. and 9 a.m., Gilgor told the EACA meeting attendants.
The lot sits behind the bank building, which has SunTrust on the ground floor and Studio Outpost, which is upstairs.
City codes require businesses to have a certain number of parking spaces based on a formula that takes into account volume of customer traffic and size of the operators.
But two EAV operators — Joe's and the Flatiron Restaurant & Bar located at the southeast corner of Flat Shoals and Glenwood avenues — aren't subject to those regulations because they were in business before the parking requirements went into effect.
Gilgor said he is speaking with the Flatiron's owner, who is looking for a long-term solution. He also said he will reach out to Joe's owner as well.
In the meantime, Gilgor reminded the EACA group there is free street parking on Flat Shoals, Glenwood, Haas and Metropolitan avenues, as well as Metropolitan Place.
The SunTrust building and the lot behind it, were owned by the now-defunct Inman Park Properties Inc. The company, headed by Jeff Notrica, imploded into bankruptcy in 2009.
IPP's failure follows years of complaints about its property maintenance. The bankruptcy left a number of commercial casualties and empty buildings in a developement empire that stretched from the Village to Birmingham, Ala.
Among EAV problem holdings, the former John B. Gordon Elementary School on Metropolitan Avenue, which has a hole in its roof.
An inspection of the interior last summer showed evidence of homeless people taking up shelter there. On the upper floor, under the hole in the roof, a tree sapling had sprouted.
The infamaous parking lot at 535 Gresham Ave. at the center of last year's booting row also was owned by IPP.
Another former IPP property, however, recently sold. The new owner of the building at 567 Flat Shoals Ave. has been renovating the property, which is zoned commercial, to a residential use and now lives there.