Free parking now 3 hours in 3 Uptown Waterloo lots

Coun. Melissa Durrell said the difference between two hours and three hours is that they hope it will mean people will make one more stop, check out an extra store or just stop for a coffee as Waterloo extends free parking in some lots to three hours during LRT construction.

City council approves recommendation to get more people into Uptown

Station Lot in Waterloo will be one of three parking lots near uptown to get extended free parking, from two hours to three, starting June 13. (Google StreetView)

The City of Waterloo has extended free parking in three lots from two hours to three hours during the day to encourage more people to shop in Uptown as streets and access remains disrupted during LRT construction. 

The resolution, which was brought forward by Coun. Melissa Durrell, was passed at Monday night's meeting.

Durrell told CBC News it is important to give people parking options in uptown Waterloo while light rail construction has shut down King Street and made it difficult for people to get around.

She said they needed to strike a balance with parking. If they allow 100 per cent free parking, then employees use those lots.

"One of the things that we wanted to see in uptown was cars to be moving, people coming in, shopping, and then leaving," Durrell said before Monday's vote.

'One more stop'

"The difference between two hours free and three hours free for me is, people will make one more stop, they'll stop in one more store, they'll check out one more place … maybe they'll have a coffee on their way."

The parking lots affected are the Station Lot, the post office lot and the lot at Bridgeport Road and Regina Street.

The extra hour of free parking between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. goes into effect June 13 and will last for a year. Parking in the se lots is already free after 5 p.m.