Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Greensward Parking Out, Free Shuttle In at Zoo, Overton Park This Weekend

Posted By on Wed, May 21, 2014 at 12:20 PM

Yesterday’s public war of words between Memphis Zoo leaders and Memphis Mayor A C Wharton overshadowed one important point - maybe even the main point - in the Greensward parking drama: no zoo parking will be allowed on the Overton Park lawn this weekend.


Free shuttle service from the new Overton Square garage and the main zoo entrance will begin Saturday morning. It’s a trial run, a five-week program to test if shuttle service can actually help alleviate parking woes around the zoo and Overton Park. More importantly, perhaps, the program will test whether or not people will actually use the shuttle.

The shuttle’s first pick up Saturday will be at 10 a.m. at the corner of Monroe and Florence. It will run straight to the zoo entrance first and then make stops at Brooks Museum of Art, and then the Overton Park golf clubhouse before returning to the garage. Shuttles will run every 10-15 minutes and end around 5:15 p.m. Parking in the Overton Square garage is free until 6 p.m.

The shuttle will run Saturdays and Sundays until June 22. In that time, no parking will be allowed on the Overton Park Greensward, the large grassy field that surrounds the park’s Rainbow Lake and new playground.


The conservancy is now looking for volunteers to staff the shuttles as greeters or to assist park visitors at stops. Learn more here.
Find more information about the new, free shuttle here.
All of this is according to the Overton Park Conservancy that said the program was a collaboration with the city as an alternative to overflow parking on the Greensward. But more needs to be done, according to the conservancy.

“The conservancy plans to continue to work with the zoo and the city on long-term solutions,” according to a conservancy statement. “In the meantime, the shuttle is intended to keep the park accessible to its visitors while reducing congestion on the park roads. It’s also an opportunity to highlight the renaissance of Midtown as a whole, where improvements to Overton Square coincide with the conservancy’s investment in Overton Park’s amenities and maintenance.”

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