Popular Orlando restaurant says it's forced to take extreme measures over parking

A popular restaurant in Orlando's Milk District says the parking situation in the area has gotten out of control.

Se7en Bites is only open four days a week and closes at 3 p.m. on weekends. If you go there after that, you'll find the parking lot fenced off, with signs all over.

One of the co-owners says she felt there was no other choice. "This has been ongoing for going on three years now," said Trina Gregory-Propst.

Se7en Bites has been in the same location for almost seven years. As the area grew, so did the restaurant's parking woes, the owner says. At one point, she says the tables would be empty, but the lot would be full.

"It’s going to implode on itself at some point in time, and I see it happening already with the way that people are frustrated, they want to come to the small businesses, but then they’re upset If there’s no place to park," Gregory-Propst said.


Gregory-Propst says they've spent about $6,000 on fencing, signs and a towing company. They even pay people to watch the lot.

"We love large parties, and we take great care of them, but then they want to leave in two cars to go day drink and leave five of their cars here for seven hours during the day," Gregory-Propst said.

Even guests are limited to two hours.

 Gregory-Propst says there's been plenty of pushback.

"I’ve received several emails, one-star reviews, sometimes from the same person multiple times on every website," Gregory-Propst said.

The chef-owner says she blames the city for the lack of parking in the area.

The City of Orlando tells FOX 35 it is working on solutions and says it should have a plan finished by the end of this week to educate people about parking and options like biking and scooters.

"We have so many parking garages downtown, so how about a trolley service or a bus service?" Gregory-Propst asked.

The city also told FOX 35 that both restaurants closest to Se7en Bites have the required amount of parking spots, and the city's requirement is based on their square footage.