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July provides learning curve for new Midland parking system

While short complimentary parking will remain, full enforcement begins next month along downtown streets as well as in all 10 municipal lots
All traditional parking meters are being removed by the town. File photo.

While Midland launched its new pay parking system earlier this month, there’s still some confusion about how it actually works.

With parking meters still in place and new pay parking boxes installed throughout town, not everyone’s aware of how, when or where to pay.

“During July, there is an educational enforcement campaign in place to give users time to adjust to the new parking system, with full enforcement commencing on August 1,” Midland communications and marketing coordinator Randy Fee told MidlandToday.

While the official launch was July 1, Fee said drivers who park on downtown streets and in all municipal lots can pay for parking using the new meters (cash, debit or credit card) or through the Parkedin mobile app.

“Signs will be installed throughout municipal lots that have a lot info and a QR code that mobile app users can simply scan to pay for parking, rather than walking to the new meters….adding more convenience for users,” Fee said.

Fee said the removal of the remaining old parking meters should be completed soon.

“They have been blocked off so that they no longer accept coins,” he said.

The town has installed 70 pay-by-plate machines along King Street along with downtown side streets, between First Street and Midland Avenue, as well as in all 10 municipal lots.

The total cost of the project is approximately $545,000, according to Fee, who noted the parking rate will be the same as with the previous meter system, 25 cents for fifteen minutes or one dollar per hour.

Parking will be enforced from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday-Friday for on-street parking and all municipal lots, with the exception of the harbour, where enforcement will be from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., seven days a week. Overnight parking will remain free from April 1 to November 15.

But while it might seem like free parking is now a thing of the past, Fee noted there is 15 minutes of complimentary parking for all street parking and one hour of complimentary parking in all municipal parking lots.

“Complimentary parking can be used once per day per licence plate,” Fee said, noting it can be used either for street parking or lot parking, but not both.

“Drivers are still required to register at the parking meters even if the complimentary time will cover their entire parking time.”

As well, Fee noted that from a staff resource perspective, this new system will make it more efficient for bylaw to enforce and to create custom parking options for events and holidays with parking permits also becoming more efficient.

“From a revenue perspective, the previous parking system generated approximately $250,000/year through paid parking and enforcement,” he said.

“When the new system has been fully implemented, those revenues obtained from all users, including casual visitors and neighbouring shoppers, are estimated to increase significantly allowing us to reinforce reserves and fund infrastructure projects.”

For more information on the town's 'Pay-by-Plate' parking system, click here.

Andrew Philips

About the Author: Andrew Philips

Community Editor Andrew Philips is a multiple award-winning journalist whose writing has appeared in some of the country‚Äôs most respected news outlets. Originally from Midland, Philips returned to the area from Québec City a decade ago.
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