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Parking, Parking, Parking


Staff member
Member Bio
Sep 22, 2015
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Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
End Edmonton's parking minimums and set a new maximum: zero

Last winter, Philip Muz's all-ages music venue, the Artery, was evicted from its home of eight years by the city. That's because the city bought the building in order to knock it down and replace it with a holding site for construction materials for the Valley Line LRT.

After an outcry, the city is looking at potentially preserving at least parts of the historic building that housed the Artery, but the venue itself is closed.

Now, Muz's attempt to reopen the venue as the Aviary in McCauley— on 111 Ave. and 93 St., a sad street that could use more retail signs without "massage" in their name—is being foiled by parking minimums. That is, the buildings he hoped to resuscitate with the venue don't have enough parking stalls, according to city regulations.

Apparently, a street lined with 30 parking meters and 100 free spots along nearby residential streets, plus nearby Stadium Station LRT, isn't enough for those minimums.

Full story (Metro Edmonton)

I liked the original title of the story, which was "Edmonton still doesn't get it, nobody comes for the parking."
Edmonton’s current parking requirements are preventing new businesses from setting up on Edmonton’s main retail streets, says a new city report released Thursday.

The report proposes dramatically lower parking minimums for three of Edmonton’s main streets — Jasper Avenue west, 124th Street and Whyte Avenue.

“The goal is to achieve an acceptable balance,” said senior planner Colton Kirsop, promising to talk with businesses and residents near other pedestrian-oriented commercial districts this spring.

The current rules — which force restaurants to dedicate 90 per cent of their land to storing vehicles — are meant for suburban locations, not the shops on Edmonton’s old trolley lines, he said. “We’ll consider how we might expand this.”

Full Story (Edmonton Journal)
To "force restaurants to dedicate 90 per cent of their land to storing vehicles" sounds astounding to me. Hopefully the city will take actions quickly and kill this outdated rule.
@Froggy Council is working to have them relaxed for central business areas quickly, but I'm not sure where that process is at now. But for sure, it's a no-brainer to fix this throwback to 60s-era thinking that has been killing those central neighbourhoods.
Also, the changing demographics of Downtown Edmonton would totally support this initiative. I doubt that many of those moving in the area are willing to drive a few blocks to just grab a bite.
'We're a bit parking mad here,' Mayor Don Iveson says
Edmonton may lose its title of parking capital of Canada.

“We’re a bit parking mad here,” said Mayor Don Iveson, before councillors at executive committee voted to cut in half low-density residential parking requirements and create further reductions for all types of buildings around transit stops.

The first move still needs council approval, but could be in place before the next construction season. Reductions around quality transit would follow. Other citywide reductions for shops, offices and high-density residential will be subject to a full parking review, expected back in 2019.

“Great cities are not built around cars and parking spaces,” said Iveson, crediting this as a major step toward reshaping a more walkable, affordable city.

Full Story (Edmonton Journal)
New parking rules mean more choice for Edmontonians
October 18, 2106

The City of Edmonton is reducing the parking requirements for low density housing from two parking spaces per dwelling to one. The change applies to all single detached homes, duplexes, row houses and secondary suites.

Currently in Edmonton regulations require two parking stalls for all low density homes. The new regulations will bring minimum parking standards in line with other Canadian cities that only require one stall for low-density zones.

The change is good news for those just entering the housing market as parking spaces add to the cost of housing. The change is also good news for people who’d prefer to have a larger garden or patio in their yard, rather than two car parking spaces. Homeowners who still want two or more parking stalls can do so.

“These new regulations mean more choice for everyone - seniors, students, single parents, families and individuals,” said Senior Planner Anne Stevenson. “Now homeowners can decide the appropriate amount of parking to meet their needs and how they want to put their property to its best use.”

Council directed City Administration to prepare changes to residential parking requirements in Edmonton’s Zoning Bylaw. City Administration will present the proposed changes to City Council in 2017 for their consideration. The changes must be approved by City Council before the new parking rules go into effect.

This change complements the City’s growth strategy that focuses on a compact and attractive city and encourages the use of public transit and other modes of transportation. It also addresses a more diverse population with very different housing needs.

In the coming days a new media campaign, including print ads and digital media, will address why the changes are being made and what that will mean to the City moving forward.

For more information:

Media contact:
Lisa Sobchyshyn
Communications Advisor
City of Edmonton
Parking prayers answered
The city is contemplating a shift to parking regulations around churches, mosques, synagogues and temples to ease congestion.

Administration will propose a zoning bylaw amendment at a committee meeting Wednesday, aimed at easing parking demands near religious institutions.

Under the proposed regulations, new religious assemblies – if over a certain size – will have to ensure parking requirements are met, said Anne Stevenson, a senior planner with the city.
Edmonton homeowners may see changes to parking space rules
The rules around the number of off-street parking spaces required for single-detached homes in Edmonton may be changing.

Currently the city requires developers to provide at least two parking stalls for row houses, single detached and semi-detached homes.

In the spring, city councillors will look at changing the bylaw to reduce the minimum number of spaces to one.

"For those people that may want to have a one-car garage so that they can maybe have a larger yard, they would have this choice," said Coun. Andrew Knack Thursday.

Every other major city in Canada requires only one parking space, said Anne Stevenson, senior planner with the city.
'If a business thinks it can survive without parking, all the power to them'
Edmonton city staff say stringent requirements to provide parking are hurting business, leading to more vacant store fronts and making it harder for people to walk to neighbourhood destinations.

So what should they do? Step away and let the market decide?

Buffalo became the first major North American city to abolish parking minimums citywide last month, opting for site-specific discussions that consider all forms of transportation instead.

Edmonton planners want to have the same kind of conversation, a public debate that could question deeply-held assumptions.

Maybe we don’t need parking attached to every business, said senior planner Anne Stevenson, getting ready to discuss her department’s work plan with councillors Wednesday. “When we were out talking with Edmontonians, some people said very clearly, ‘It’s a business decision. If a business thinks it can survive without parking, all the power to them.’ ”
Editorial: Outdated minimum parking rules need overhaul
It would be easy to dismiss calls to revisit Edmonton’s minimum parking requirements as another salvo at private vehicles from a city hall preoccupied with bikes, public transit and walking.

But city planners are justified in calling for a public debate on just how much parking businesses should be obliged to provide. Residential parking rules are already being changed to meet changing times.

The specific minimum requirements in Edmonton’s zoning bylaw for all kinds of businesses from banks to restaurants can present formidable barriers for entrepreneurs. For example, a community pub wanting to launch in the space left by a closed hair salon can’t open unless it finds significantly more parking – even if the bar owner expected most of the clientele to walk from the surrounding neighbourhood.
'Real time' parking data coming to Edmonton
The City of Edmonton is researching technology that provides information on available parking stalls in "real time."

The technology involves sensors on each parking stall in city-managed parking lots that would relay information to an app and an online map, said James Donahue, parking project manager.

"As we've noticed the last couple of days with Teachers' Convention, our facilities do fill up," said Donahue. "The whole idea is to reduce that time it takes to be able to find a stall."

The technology would include digital signs on each level of a parkade indicating the number of available stalls.