By Tracey Arial
Next Tuesday, a public consultation to discuss whether Laval should use intelligent parking will occur. It will begin at 7 p.m., at the Château Royal, 3500 Souvenir, right next to Laval city hall.
The Montreal boroughs of Verdun and LaSalle plan to continue using intelligent parking, regardless of what happens in Laval.
“The dynamic parking system functions well in Verdun and responds to our needs,” said Verdun borough mayor Jean-François Parenteau. “Citizens who use it find it helpful. It enables them to avoid moving their car multiple times for nothing and saves time for the borough.”
Parenteau doesn’t think the system directly affects snow-clearing operations.
“During the last few storms, Verdun received fewer complaints than many other boroughs where intelligent parking isn’t in force,” he said. “There may be ways to improve snow-clearing operations, but removing dynamic parking wouldn’t be among them.”
Verdun’s system was copied from LaSalle, a neighbouring borough. Residents who attended the last borough meeting were asked about intelligent parking and snow clearing. Most praised intelligent parking even while complaining about snow-clearing.
“Everyone in LaSalle is used to calling to find out if they have to move their cars or not,” said Francisco Moreno, a LaSalle citizen who made the borough’s snow-clearing struggles public by complaining to Benoît Dutrizac. “For the snow, all the administration has to do is apply the rules. They’re not doing that because they want to save money.”
When LaSalle spokesperson Pierre Dupuis was asked about the issue last week, he said that the borough hasn’t received any complaints about snow-clearing on their property in the last two weeks.
He also described the borough’s “info-stationnement” system that went into force fifteen years ago. Until then, during every snow storm, public works employees had to drive around the city putting temporary no-parking signs up wherever clearing operations were needed. When the snow-clearing was done, employees had to drive around to pick up all the signs.
That no longer happens.
Now most streets in the borough have permanent signs describing rotating parking regulations that allow residents to park on one side of a street three days a week (Monday, Wednesday and Friday) from Nov. 15-Apr. 15. Residents park on the other side Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Dupuis says that snow-clearing operations usually take place roughly 25 days every winter. Public workers now update a phone system to inform residents when parking regulations are fully in force or have been relaxed.
“When snow clearing is done, workers don’t have to retrieve all these signs,” said Dupuis. “All they have to do is access the phone system and change the message. This way, we let people park on both sides of the street about 80% of the time in the winter.”
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