Tax Winnipeg parking lot 'eyesores' downtown, says Ouellette

Winnipeg mayoral hopeful Robert-Falcon Ouellette has a way to make the city an extra $26 million a year.

Surface parking lots in downtown have 'lowest possible economic footprint,' says mayoral hopeful

If elected, Winnipeg mayoral candidate Robert-Falcon Ouellette said he would work to implement a land value tax on downtown surface parking lots to encourage development. (CBC)

Winnipeg mayoral hopeful Robert-Falcon Ouellette has a way to make the city an extra $26 million a year.

Ouellete said if elected, he would implement a land value tax on surface parking lots.

It would tax parking lots as if they were four storey buildings.

“They are eyesores these parking lots, they are not attractive, they contribute to the sense of danger, and they have the lowest possible economic footprint that we could possibly use for this space," he said. 

Ouellette said the downtown's 208 surface lots equal 3½ million square feet for potential development.

"I will tax them as if they were a four storey building," he said. "This will encourage developers to start developing their lots instead of squatting on them, hoping to somehow make that big payday in a few years."

The land value tax would be meant to encourage lot owners to develop their space, Ouellette said.