Victoria considering charging for downtown street parking on Sundays

The City of Victoria is exploring the idea of charging for street parking on Sundays, to help fund a bus passes for youth.

City Staff are investigating the amount of potential revenue that could be made from people parking in the downtown core on Sundays, to determine if this would be able to cut the amount that families spend on bus passes for their kids.

Mayor Lisa Helps says families spend a lot of money on bus passes, and this program could save them quite a bit.

"If a parent has to buy a transit pass for a kid, it's $45 a month.  That works out to $540 a year. If they've got two kids, it's $1080 a year.  And so if the city partners with BC Transit, and basically institutes a program similar to the UPass, it's about $11.20 per kid per month."

She adds that subsidized passes will not only take a financial burden off of parents, it will also cut back on green house gas emissions, teach kids independence and build a future generation of transit-users, as well as free up parking spaces that could be used by people who want to do their shopping on Sunday.

The Executive Director of the Downtown Victoria Business Association, Jeff Bray, agrees, saying having people cycle in and out of spots will allow for more people to come downtown for their shopping needs.  However, he does point out that a lot of spaces are taken up by people who work downtown, and he wouldn't want city run parkades to start charging on Sundays.

City Staff are bringing their findings to council on Friday December 14th, and Helps is encouraging people to share their thoughts and concerns regarding the proposed plan.

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