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On-Street Parking

What is it?

Parking signsOn-street parking is not a right but is rather a privilege and is subject to any number of functional, safety, geometrical, and adjacent land use access characteristics of a given street. By default, parking is permitted unless signs are posted to indicate otherwise.

What are the issues?

  • Off-street parking lots are being lost to new development. There is an ever increasing demand for the limited supply of on street parking spaces. Residential streets with a width of less than 9 metres may accommodate one-sided parking. Residential streets with a width of 9 metres or more can be considered for two-sided parking. The streets are public domain. Should residential on-street parking be open to use on a first come first served basis? Should residents control a street to the exclusion of others?
  • Should permit parking be considered as a way of controlling parking on residential streets?

When and where are parking control signs installed?

  • The issue of on-street parking can be one of the most contentious issues for traffic engineers to deal with due to the number and variety of competing uses for a limited amount of curb space. A street network must move traffic safely and expeditiously, commercial districts depend upon available curb space for unloading and customer parking, and residents become frustrated at the high level of demand for long-term parking spaces within their neighborhood. Restrictive parking control signs are installed to address the need for extra travel lanes, safety concerns, and commercial/passenger vehicle loading zones.
  • Permissive parking control signs are installed to limit the amount of time that a vehicle may be parked, and are primarily found in business and commercial areas to generate parking turnover for the mutual benefit of businesses and their clientele. These same signs have also been used extensively on residential streets around hospitals, universities, major industrial complexes, and the downtown where there is a high demand for parking by people who live outside of the area.