DENVER -- Paid parking at Cherry Creek Mall is making some shoppers pull out their timers while shopping.
“We definitely set a timer and we check the ticket and we program our phone,” shopper Heather Hughes said.
Jisel Ordonez says she tries her best not to go over their one hour free parking.
“A lot of time I feel rushed, I don't think it's the experience I want to have,” Ordonez said.
Some Cherry Creek business owners at the mall are feeling the impact of rushed customers. The owner of Wich Wich, Scott Stevens, says he has to cut back on employee hours.
“My business was doing fine; it is now down 40 percent versus a year ago. I’m losing money every week and all of this started when the paid parking went into effect,” Stevens said.
And he isn't alone. Mike Murphy, owner of shoe store Steve Madden says his foot traffic is at an eight-year low.
"On any given day it's anywhere from 20 to 40 percent down compared to last year,” Murphy said.
In an effort to revive his store and others, Murphy decided to pay shoppers for the second hour for the entire month of March and shoppers don't even have to buy anything or shop at his store.
“We have to find a way to encourage the customers to come in they can't feel like they are on the clock,” said Murphy.
Taubman Company, which runs Cherry Creek Mall, released the following statement:
“We implemented Smart Parking on January 17 because of the growing neighborhood and the need to protect and make easy parking for our customers. We are confident that the benefits of the new system will outweigh any short-term disruption and this will become evident to our valued tenants and customers.”