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Free P! continues this December: Resident and business poll shows overwhelming support

Residents and businesses have spoken, and they overwhelming want the Free P! program for the month of December to continue; they also want steps taken to curb abuses of the program and ensure it is available for visitors to the downtown.

I conducted a recent resident survey that showed overwhelming support to keep Free P!, and that it significantly influenced decisions to come downtown – which was the primary goal of the program. Highlights:

  • 601 respondents, 52% of whom live or work outside the downtown
  • 88% supporting keeping the program, and making changes to curb abuses by permit holders
  • 88% said Free P! strongly or somewhat influenced their decision to visit downtown.

The Burlington Downtown Business Association also surveyed their members and found majority support to keep Free P!:

  • 154 businesses responded (35% of the membership)
  • 58% have their own on-site parking for employees, staff and/or customers
  • 67% support maintaining Free P!

The city will employ several strategies to curb parking abuses (eg. Permit holders parking in lots they are not assigned to, closer to their destination):

  • Delayed opening of the Brant St and Elizabeth Street lots; the lots will be barricaded and closed from 7-9 am to encourage downtown workers to park in their regular spots
  • License plate scan to determine if a registered permit holder is parking outside their assigned lot; sanctions for repeated infractions will be imposed (eg. Denial of permit for 2018)

Public survey summary: FREE P parking engagement Oct 5 2017

Business survey results: FREE-P-2017-results-and-next-steps

I was inspired to seek public office because I believe, like so many of you, “I can do something about that” on the issues we face. As councilor, my role is to take a stand on what’s best for residents and go to bat for it. Pushback is inevitable from those who don’t have the community’s interests at heart. I will stand with you and for you, to achieve the best interests of our city, without caving to unacceptable compromise in the name of consensus.

What's your take?