Limited parking space at Mitchell Airport causes problems for ride share drivers

NOW: Limited parking space at Mitchell Airport causes problems for ride share drivers

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Space issues in General Mitchell International Airport’s Uber and Lyft parking lot are causing problems for drivers and passengers.

Drivers for the ride share companies say the lot designated for them to wait for rides in is too small.

There aren’t many options because they won’t receive new passengers if they’re not on airport grounds.

Their parking lot gets congested and backed up with cars, which then blocks the entrance for city buses.

“They get mad, and then the police come and then they’re writing tickets,” said Lauren Muzenski, a Lyft driver.

Some drivers say a $200 or $300 citation isn’t out of the question.

“You work so many hours to make that $200, and then you get one ticket and it ruins your whole week,” said Faries Jaraba, another driver.

The crowdedness can also make it difficult to get to passengers waiting to be picked up.

Drivers say it falls on the airport to find a solution.

“We all have to help each other out at the end of the day,” Jaraba said.

A Mitchell Airport spokesperson says there are no plans to make any changes in the short-term.

One of the veteran ride share drivers, Joel Becksackie, believes the answer already exists.

He says they’re not supposed to sit in the Uber/Lyft lot waiting for spots to open; they’re supposed to circulate through to the public waiting lot, where it’s free to park for half an hour.

“The Sheriff’s [Office] has their own job to do here at Mitchell,” Becksackie said. “They shouldn’t have to come over here and babysit these clowns who don’t know how to drive and do their job correctly.”

In response to Becksackie, drivers told CBS 58 airport security has been known to block entrance into the public lot for Ubers and Lyfts.

Drivers also complain that taxi cabs have more than enough space, which they say they outnumber.

The airport spokesperson said it’s possible ground transportation could be rearranged during Mitchell’s long-term master plan changes.

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