City of McPherson, Emprise Bank come to agreement on Ash parking

By Chris Swick
September 10, 2015

With the new Emprise Bank location going in at the intersection of East Kansas Avenue and Ash Street in McPherson, parking concerns have been raised.

McPherson Emprise President Chet Lang told McPherson City Commissioners during a study session Tuesday that the planning commission requested, and the bank agreed, that more depth be added to what would be their street-side parking on Ash.

“A semi would have a hard time turning and parking,” Lang said of the intersection. “So, at planning and zoning, we talked about the fact of moving our sidewalk further to the east so that there would be more depth so that vehicles can park there and semis could still turn.”

Lang said that the bank was under the impression that the City would take on that cost, but was recently informed that long-time policy is that on-street parking outside of Main Street is the responsibility of the business owner.

The bank's proposal, then, was that Emprise provides the material for the reconstruction of the parking lot, if the McPherson Street Department could provide the manpower to help with the construction.

Mayor Tom Brown was reluctant to commit city staff to that project due to an abundance of projects the street department already had on its slate for 2015, fearing that they wouldn't be able to get around to it until well into 2016. Not only that, but the city is planning on tearing up that portion of Ash Street for a partial reconstruction in 2016.

“[Lang's] not going to want his bank to open and not to have [the street-side parking],” Brown said. “I'm not really wanting to set a precedent, but because we have a number of circumstances here, part of it involves us, not only in the planning, but in the road and we're going to tear it out and have a sacrificial strip and everything, we would pay half of the materials for the concrete and rebar.”

The commission agreed to pay for up to $6,000 in material costs. Official action will be taken during an upcoming McPherson City Commission meeting.