PEI

Strategic parking plan in the works for downtown Charlottetown

Demand for additional parking spaces has Charlottetown Area Development Corporation in talks with the city to map out a strategic plan for the downtown area.

Existing parkades are at capacity, with long waitlists for monthly spots

An additional 70 spaces are planned for the Fitzroy parkade in Charlottetown.

A burgeoning demand for parking in the downtown core has the Charlottetown Area Development Corporation (CADC) in talks with the city to map out a strategic parking plan.

Every parkade in the downtown area is currently at capacity for monthly parking and some even have waitlists. 

Amanda Lindsay, who works downtown, said she's previously been able to find a space in the Pownal parkade. But recently it's become increasingly difficult. 

"Now I'm having to park at least a 10-minute walk away — and that's a speed-walk," Lindsay said.

She said she isn't looking forward to searching for parking during the winter months. 

Plans and expansion

Ron Waite, the general manager at CADC, said there are plans to add another 70 spaces to the Fitzroy parkade. But he said those spaces will be immediately spoken for by more than 100 people who are waiting for spots. 

"Over the past few years, there's been fairly significant development in the downtown and that obviously puts a strain on infrastructure," he said. 

"These parking lot structures are extremely expensive to build so you need to have a sustained long waiting list before the city would ever look at building a parkade." 

When you leave and go back to parking on the street in the spring you're kind of giving up your spot.— Ron Waite

Parkade construction costs anywhere from $30,000 to $50,000 per space, said Waite.

"Part of the other challenge that we face here is that there are a number of residents that choose to park on the street during the summer months but come the winter months when there are on-street restrictions, they look to become monthly parkers," Waite said.

"When you leave and go back to parking on the street in the spring, you're kind of giving up your spot. You run the risk that come fall, there might not be a spot available." 

Waite said the request for a review of parking in the downtown area is still in the preliminary stages. The proposal will need council's approval before the search can begin for a consultant. 

More P.E.I. news

With files from Angela Walker and Island Morning

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