Free parking to remain in place in Wellington West and Westboro
It appears you're still going to be able to park for free on Wellington St. and Richmond Rd.
The Kitchissippi Parking Strategy is recommending to the Transportation Committee that the Somerset-Wellington-Richmond corridor remain free of paid parking. It's a decision that has business owners in other areas fuming.
"The businesses on Preston St. have been suffering drastically because of the parking," says owner of La Favorita Nick Shallal.
Paid parking was introduced on Preston St. in 1999 with meters. After the revitalization seven years ago, the current system of getting a ticket was put in place. Shallal says that has kept many people away from the area and calls the fact that another trendy area won't have to institute paid parking unfair.
"I don't know why they're doing this double standard," he says. "In some places, yes, in some places, no, which is not fair."
The KPS is recommending the Transportation Committee approve 90 minute free parking on the main corridor, from Monday to Sunday.
"Paid parking could be a way to help deal with some of the parking pressures that we have," says Kitchissippi councillor Jeff Leiper. "But given the opposition to it from residents that I've heard, from many of the merchants that I've heard, it's not practical to support that at this time."
According to the most recent parking study, the area should have paid parking. The city says if 85% of parking spots are used at peak times, paid parking is recommended. In 2016 in Westboro, 92% of spots are used at peak times.
Under the current system, the area councillor, BIAs and community associations can veto the change to paid parking in areas where it's not already in place.
The recommendation will be presented to Transportation Committee in April.