By Tracey Arial
Laval independent city councillor Pierre Anthian plans to hold a public consultation about intelligent parking on Tuesday, Feb. 24, at 7 p.m. It will take place at Château Royal, 3500 Souvenir, next to City Hall.
Intelligent parking enables citizens to leave their cars parked on the street until a snow clearing or street cleaning operation takes place.
Anthan used the system when he lived in Verdun and he thinks Laval should adopt the same practice.
“Parking regulations are not meant to be a trap to ensure that citizens pay extra taxes,” he said. “We need to set them up so that they work for everyone. Intelligent parking is the way to make that happen.”
Intelligent parking began in the Montreal borough of LaSalle. Before moving their cars from one side of the street to another, citizens can call a red phone number shown on the signs to find out when the next city operation will take place on the street. If nothing is happening, they don’t have to move their cars.
Anthian says that the system saved him a lot of time when he lived at the junction of 3rd and Wellington in Verdun, which also uses the system. Since he and his neighbours had access to parking on a regular basis, they were careful to move their cars when snow clearing or street cleaning operations were underway.
He claims that Laval could save time and money by adopting the same system.
The City of Laval pays to tow 52,000 cars every year because they are on the street when the snow plows are clearing,” said Anthian. “The owners of those cars don’t have to pay to have their cars moved, nor do they receive tickets for causing problems. There’s no consequences whatsoever to them for leaving their cars in the way of major snow clearing operations. Meanwhile, if a car is left on the wrong side of street at the beginning of October when there’s no snow on the road at all, the driver gets a $43 parking ticket, despite causing no problems for anyone. It’s an abhorrent lack of justice.”
Anthian has been pushing the idea of intelligent parking since he got elected for Mayor Demer’s party. At that time, Mayor Demers expressed interest in the idea. That support changed when Anthian left Demers’ party at the end of September.
Laval municipal council rejected intelligent parking last November, and at that time, the mayor and city bureaucrats said they didn’t believe it was legal. Since then, Anthian has sought out a legal opinion proving that the practice is indeed legal.
He brought that legal opinion to council last Tuesday, February 3, but delayed asking for a vote on the issue after opponents blamed recent snow-clearing issues in LaSalle on intelligent parking.
Anthian has since spoken to LaSalle politicians who say that intelligent parking works extremely well and was not the reason for their recent snow-clearing frustrations. He plans to invite them to his public consultation to provide citizens with more information.
He’s also set up a Facebook page to inform citizens about his campaign.
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