Downtown Hattiesburg may remove parking meters

Parking meters in downtown Hattiesburg could soon be a thing of the past.

Mayor Johnny Dupree said, beginning May 1, all the parking meters downtown will be covered to allow free two-hour parking.

Dupree said the city will try the new experiment for 90 days to see how effective it is.

The downtown historic association has been pushing for no meters, saying it would bring more traffic to the area. The meters were put up downtown in the 1980s because downtown employees were taking up much of the spaces, leaving no room for customers.

Dupree said now there is enough employee parking areas downtown. He added, motorists will still be ticketed if they park for over two hours, but the amount of the ticket has not been determined.

If the idea proves successful, after 90 days the parking meters will be removed.