Tue. May 17th, 2022

Vancouver City Council members are set to vote on a new parking program that includes fees for some new vehicles and necessary parking permits for overnight stays on all city streets.

The controversial Climate Emergency Parking Program was recommended by municipal staff last week and will be debated at City Hall on Tuesday and Wednesday.

“To do things like make any neighborhood walkable where people can get to their basic daily needs without a car, we need to fund these improvements,” said Peter McCartney, the Wilderness Committee’s climate campaign.

McCartney signed up to speak with the program’s merits at Tuesday’s meeting.

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If approved, the Climate Emergency Parking Program will enter into force in early 2022 and require overnight parking permits for each residential street in the city at a cost of $ 45 per year or $ 5 for low-income families.

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A fee of $ 3 for overnight visitors to the city would be charged and there would be no daytime changes or parking fees.

“I am in favor of this program because free parking is an illusion,” McCartney explained.

“There is no such thing, and we all pay for it when people get free access to public space to put their personal belongings when they are not using them.”

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Vancouver city staff report recommends controversial Climate Emergency Parking Program

Vancouver City Staff Report Recommends Controversial Climate Emergency Parking Program – September 29, 2021

The Climate Emergency Parking Program will also include an annual “pollution tax” for anyone who buys a gas car in a model that is 2023 or later and crosses a certain threshold for climate-polluting carbon emissions.

There would be no charge for electric, hybrid, low-polluting and most economical cars, but new “polluting” vehicles such as large SUVs, full-size pick-ups and most gas-powered luxury sports vehicles would come with the $ 1,000-a-year flag. .

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All previously owned cars or models prior to 2023 would be exempt from the fees, as would vehicles adapted for wheelchairs.

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Vancouver’s Climate Emergency Action Pan aims to reduce the city’s CO2 footprint by 50 percent by 2030. According to municipal staff, transportation accounts for 39 percent of these emissions.

Revenues from the new parking regime – up to $ 68 million over the first four years – would support other initiatives in the climate action plan.

Critics of the program, however, have said it cannot accommodate residents who require certain types of vehicles in order to perform their jobs, and punish tenants who do not have access to parking garages.

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Coun. Sarah Kirby-Yung, who has been a strong critic of the proposed parking plan, said it “ignores overwhelming opposition from residents” and gets a “failure” on affordability, justice and climate.

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“I would say it’s a kind of war against the working class because this will only target people who do not have access to outside parking,” she explained.

Tenants, multi-purpose housing with more than one driver and those with roommates will be charged, she added, while single-family homeowners with driveways and condominiums with parking garages will not.

Many of the areas where overnight parking permits would be introduced, she added, have high concentrations of different residents, working-class residents and people in the industry who require large trucks for work.

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Voting on the program will take place on Wednesday.

More than 30 people are on the list to discuss the program, including representatives from Canadian Doctors for the Environment, the University of British Columbia’s Faculty of Land and Food Systems, For Our Kids Vancouver and Kind Cafe and Eatery.

The staff report estimates that the program will cost $ 1.7 million to start and approximately $ 1 million a year to administer.

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