BILLINGS – If you have been on North Broadway in downtown Billings over the last two days, you may notice three parking spots that are now replaced by what looks to be a deck with planters, an extension right out in front of Doc Harper’s Tavern, known as a “pedestrian right-of-way.”
The design for the “right-of-way” first went through a special review from the state of Montana, then a unanimous vote from the Billings City Council.
The first pedestrian “right-of-way’ was built three years ago for Doc Harper’s in coordination with the city engineer.
Owner Barb Harper says at first there was some concern but that quickly changed.
“The first reaction was a little hesitation but it didn’t take them long to get on board, but it did take some presentation,” she said.
The pedestrian right-of-way “kit” sticks out about 10 feet into the street and is one continuous piece, with planters and areas to sit.
“A lot of people complained about the parking at first but that quickly ended because this gets full of flowers. It’s become a seasonal perennial favorite thing for this area. All these people love it you know they are like oh it’s spring, you know it’s like the symbol of spring now,” said contractor Chris Pruitt.
Each year the Doc Harper’s owners pay the city for the “kit” to take up three parking spots, for six months out of the year.