SIOUX FALLS, SD (KELO) — Local retailers, residents, non-profits and police gathered Thursday to discuss safety concerns in downtown Sioux Falls. The goal of the meeting was to come up with solutions to issues ranging from traffic to panhandling.

More than 30 people filled a meeting room in the downtown library to talk about some of the challenges facing downtown Sioux Falls. While most said they do feel safe, there are problems with traffic and noise.

“It’s hard to sleep at night in some of the locations because of traffic noise, people racing engines, problems like that,” Joe Kirby said.

Others say they’re seeing an increase in aggressive panhandling.

“Some people have been a little more intimidating with their behavior in terms of comfortable approaching people, whether it’s asking for things, demanding things,” Ivy Oland Dandar said.

As the meeting was taking place, police responded to a call on Phillips Avenue to help a person near the downtown Lewis Drug.

“It’s troubling. I think we have to really, as a community, come up with some solutions to helping those that unfortunately, probably aren’t in a stable condition to help themselves,” Bob Meyer of Lewis Drug said.

Police say crime numbers back up the claim that downtown is a safe area with a low number of priority calls involving assaults.

“I feel a lot of the concern has to do with panhandlers and folks who are consuming alcoholic beverages in downtown areas where it’s illegal to do so,” Capt. Terrance Matia of the Sioux Falls Police Department said.

Police have secured grant money to increase traffic patrols this summer to focus on the safety of both downtown drivers and pedestrians.

Downtown Sioux Falls is planning to host another meeting next month. The organization is also planning on having an additional 4-5 so-called “ambassadors” to assist visitors and to be extra sets of eyes for any potential problems that may unfold downtown.