Manitoba

City of Winnipeg hopes new signage will help clear up parking confusion in Exchange District

Downtown drivers may be surprised to see bold, new parking signs in and around the Exchange District. 

Latest signs part of 2nd phase of pilot project intended to make parking instructions easier to read

The existing parking signage in Winnipeg's Exchange District is shown in a June 2021 photo. The city hopes new signs will help make parking rules in the area less confusing. (CBC/Radio-Canada)

Drivers in Winnipeg's Exchange District will soon see new signs the city hopes will clear up confusing rules around parking in the area.

The new colour-coded parking signs will be unveiled in the Exchange District this week, the city said in a news release Monday.

The signs are the second phase of a pilot project aimed to address existing street parking signage in the area that has, in the past, been criticized as confusing.

"Businesses have told us confusing parking signage remains one of the barriers for visitors to the Exchange District," Vivian Santos, the city councillor for Point Douglas — which includes the Exchange District — said in Monday's news release.

The latest phase of the pilot project involves two different types of signs: the first are sidewalk-facing "parking guides," which resemble a grid and feature a colour-coded timetable intended to be read after you've parked, to ensure you're in designated parking area.

The second phase of a City of Winnipeg pilot project for parking signage in the Exchange District includes these sidewalk-facing 'parking guides,' which feature a colour-coded timetable intended to be read after you've parked to ensure you're in designated parking area. (City of Winnipeg)

The other signs, new to this phase of the project, are street-facing signs, intended to help drivers quickly identify where they can and can't park as they drive by.

Those are intended to replace the city's old parking signs with signs featuring bolder colours and simpler icons, the city says.

The new parking signs the city is piloting are shown on the right, with the older style signs shown on the left. (City of Winnipeg)

In the summer of 2021, the city piloted the sidewalk-facing parking guides and asked for public feedback. The signs now being tested in Phase 2 of the pilot have been redesigned with clearer layouts, text and graphics in response to that feedback, the city says.

The city has also released some of its findings from the public feedback to Phase 1.

The 96 respondents who used the parking guides in the first phase were split on whether they liked or disliked the guides, according to the city (36 said they liked the guides, while 46 said they did not).

The city says it hopes to get more feedback on the lastest signage.

The public can give feedback on the signs until March 21 through an online survey at winnipeg.ca/parkingsignspilot or by scanning a QR code on the new signage.

A final report on the pilot project is expected in the fall, according to the city's website.

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