FREE PARKING on Saturdays at all on-street spaces, municipal lots and parking garage (effective January 1, 2014);
FREE PARKING the month of December at all on-street spaces, municipal lots and parking garage (starting December 01, 2013);
REPLACEMENT OF ALL PARKING METERS with multi-space “pay and display” parking machines capable of accepting a wide variety of payment methods;
INCREASED TIME for on-street paid parking, from two hours to three hours maximum;
RATE INCREASE of $0.25 per hour increase to all municipal parking spaces, and $2 to the daily rate (becomes $14, up from $12.00).
My Take: I’m pleased council supported these changes, which businesses and residents have been requesting for some time. They will improve the experience of living, visiting and working downtown. Though people don’t come downtown “to park”, for many parking is their first and last experience and memory of the downtown. As such, the goal is to make it as simple and user friendly as possible. These changes help do that. They also provide some relief from paid parking, while the rate increase helps to maintain the parking reserve, which goes toward building future parking supply, either in cooperation with future private developments (my preferred) or as a stand alone structure.