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Calgary seeking feedback on residential parking permit program

Parking is always a hot-button topic in just about any community, but now the city of Calgary is looking for your input on the residential parking system.

Kim Gole, a parking strategist with the city of Calgary said the residential parking program has been around since the mid 70s, and while changes have been made over the years, this is the first consultation and review they’ve done of the program.

“We haven’t actually done this before, which is why we’re doing it,” said Gole.

“We’ve heard over the year issues people have had. It’s become quite a bit of a larger program than it was originally. It touches a lot more Calgarians than it did before, so we’re trying to get it to a place where it works better for folks.”

The Residential Parking Permit program puts limits on parking in certain residential communities, while allowing homeowners and residents to park on the street at any time.

In August 2017, the city started rolling out its digital residential parking permit program. Previously, residents had paper cards which would hang from their rear view mirrors. The new program saw parking enforced with the city’s ParkPlus camera technology, which scans licence plates.

Ward 8 councillor Evan Woolley said overall the new system is working but there have been some minor issues around getting guests’ licence plates in the system for short visits.

“It’s not without its imperfections,” he said. “There are pieces around visitor parking that have not worked that we’re doing a bunch of work on.”

Overall he said despite those hiccups, the new digital system has been very successful.

Gole said they’re not just looking for input into the new digital system. They’re also interested in hearing from people on the different restriction types and zone sizes.

“There might be difficulties around a major generator like a school or hospital,” said Gole.

“I think we’re open to looking at any aspects of the program. We just need to see what the actual issues are.”

The city will be compiling those concerns and creating a “what we heard” report, which should be online in March.

The city will then take those reports back to communities for a final review and consultation, likely in June.

Details about the upcoming in-person workshops can be found at calgary.ca/rpp. Calgarians can also give their feedback online at that address.

“It’s not just to folks who live in a residential area,”said Gole. “Anybody can respond to it.”