LETHBRIDGE – The city is responding to negative feedback about the digital parking kiosks that replaced the parking meters six weeks ago.
The biggest change is the addition of a second maximum purchase per day in the two- and three-hour zones. While drivers can only top up their parking purchase to the maximum, they’ll be able to return and make a second purchase of time, up to the maximum, in the same day.
Downtown revitalization manager Andrew Malcolm says this will especially help people who leave and want to return to downtown later.
“The large purpose of this change in system was to create turnover in downtown,” Malcolm explained at a news conference Thursday, July 12. He said more than two purchases in a day would be akin to the old meters allowing people to top up their time indefinitely.
“In trying to create a balance for all the different users in the downtown, we believe the second purchase is providing that balance for everybody.”
The city has also converted 34 three-hour stalls to 10-hour, in two locations along 5 Avenue South as well as a portion of 2 Avenue South east of Galt Gardens. It says it’s sticking to a policy of not placing 10-hour stalls in front of storefronts.
As well, more signs are being installed mid-block to help people understand what zone they’re in.
“I don’t think any changes that we could do would make everybody happy,” Malcolm said. “Every single person in the downtown has a different schedule and a different way they park and utilize the downtown. But we believe that this change will make it equitable, and as fair to as many people as possible.”
Tweaks are being made to the kiosk software and the app, and Downtown BRZ ambassadors will be available through the summer to offer help.
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