Among the changes, Winchester First recommended increasing parking tickets from $5 to $20, reducing loading zones, and installing diagonal parking on the south side of East Broadway between Main and Highland streets.
The organization also wants to install a crosswalk on Maple Street and work with churches to use vacant spaces in their parking lots.
In response, commissioners asked city staff to research how other communities use a tiered system on parking tickets, which increases fines with every new offense.
City staff plan to send letters to every downtown business asking for input on loading zones, and letters will go to the owners of private parking lots requesting use of spaces during weekdays. Staff will also contact the state Department of Highways to request a crosswalk on Maple Street.
Lastly, the commission plans to have an engineer analyze space on East Broadway for diagonal parking.
Lara Thornbury, director of Winchester First, said she was pleased with the commission's plans. The biggest goal, she said, is persuading business owners to use downtown lots rather than parking for long periods in the two-hour parking zones.
"I think this is going to be a little bit of a process, and this is just a step … in the right direction," she said.
Contact Mike Wynn at email@example.com.