Parking to get a very serious review: what do we have - what do we need? Consultants being hired.

News 100 blueBy Pepper Parr

October 15th, 2015


Parking – that bug bear for almost everyone with a vehicle – is getting a close look by city hall

The Planning & Building Department,in conjunction with the Transportation Services Department will be retaining a consulting firm to complete a City Wide Parking Standards Review.

Parking lot - Locust street

It is surprising how often this parking lot on Locust street is nowhere near full.

Burlington’s off-street parking requirements are set out in a zoning By-Law that is used to govern the supply of parking for all types of land use.

Over the past few years, the City has received frequent requests for parking reduction in areas such as seniors housing, intensification nodes, visitor parking, and mixed use developments. At the same time, the City has been experiencing parking shortfalls in areas such as medical office complexes, newer high density communities, and places of worship.

A review of the current Zoning regulations is necessary to develop a context-sensitive framework for updated parking requirements based on existing and desired land use and transportation characteristics.

The city will run its own parking offence courts - might see a Night Court as part of the new Customer Service philosophy wortking its way through city hall.

Parking offence revenue is significant for the city.

This Parking Review will be the first step toward the completion of the comprehensive zoning review for the City of Burlington. The recommendation s of this study will be used as the basis for updated parking regulations and design standards for development in Burlington.

Parking on street

Brant Street on a bad day?

The objective is to adopt an approach that considers land use, built form, design standards, as well as proximity to transit and other alternative modes of travel.

The parking standards review ties into the Transportation Master Plan; the goal is to move towards managing parking in a responsible manner that promotes sustainable forms of development and provides an emphasis on travel demand management.

Once the consultants have been retained and the contract deliverables ironed out timelines will be put in place.

Parking lot 3 BEST

The city would dearly love to see a structure on this John Street parking lot – can the parking demand get by without these parking spots? There is a supermarket parking lot 35 yards away.

The city is about to move into some serious thinking and debating of what they want in the Strategic Plan – which is now many many months behind – the first year of the four year term of office has been completed – and the strategic Plan is still not in place.

There are those at city hall who think the plan may not get completed before the end of the year which would push its completion out even further because the budget has to be determined in January.

The city manager met with council on Wednesday to set out his work plan – he didn’t get a standing ovation.  Several thought it was a bit on the ambitious side.  There is a lot of work to be done.  More on the city managers work plan in a separate article.

The Gazette will keep on top of this one for you.

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3 comments to Parking to get a very serious review: what do we have – what do we need? Consultants being hired.

  • Bryce Lee

    A new parking structure completed Joseph Brant Hospital, full all the time (often with employee’s vehicles (they have to park somewhere too) from the word GO. The hospital needs to rethink the parking; a garage three or four times as large is required. Some of us will be unable to walk the distance from the new garage to the new hospital, suggest maybe a second garage, closer to the new or the old structure, capacity of at least 600 vehicles including bicycles, motorcycles and
    Then and only then, might there be more parking at Spencer Smith Park all of the time.

  • James

    How many hundreds of thousands of dollars is this “parking study” going to cost us, and how many years will it take to complete it? Why do we need to hire outside consultants to study the parking situation when staff at City Hall are already aware (or at least they should be) of the changes that are needed? Do they not already have a good handle on what this city needs? Isn’t that why we’re paying them? I really wish they’d start running our city like a private sector business. Stop hiring outside consultants for the job we’re already paying you to do (and if City staff are not qualified, why were they hired in the first place?), and stop wasting so much time and money with little result to show for it. How’s that Transportation Master Plan coming by the way? Yeah, the one you started 4 years ago. Open the front door at City Hall and I bet you’ll find a big hamster running in it’s wheel. Looks busy, but isn’t accomplishing anything. They need to focus less on the theory, and more on the practical. There are things you can do NOW. Let’s see some results!

  • Mr.Bean

    Spencer Smith parking lot was filled to over-capacity on Thanksgiving Monday with about 20 vehicles, with very little people in the park as we drove by. My family prefers to enjoy our time and money in areas that provide sufficient parking, which our waterfront does not.