Parking spots to be removed in Yaletown starting in April

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The city is looking at eliminating some parking on Mainland and Hamilton streets in Yaletown in order to make access easier for the fire department. Photo Dan Toulgoet

Residents could find it more difficult to find parking in Yaletown next month as the number of parking spots decreases by almost 50 per cent on Mainland and Hamilton streets.

The City of Vancouver said the changes are being made to allow fire trucks to access the street and set up their ladders in case of an emergency. The number of spots available will drop from about 200 to 117.

The city originally planned to remove all angled parking on Hamilton and Mainland Street to replace it with parallel parking.

Lon LaClaire, the city’s director of transportation, said the Yaletown Business Improvement Association expressed interest in keeping the angled parking.

While this doesn’t create more parking in the short term, we may be able to work with the BIA to relocate some of the 60 dumpsters in the area which would create additional parking spaces in the long term. In addition, we will work to increase the amount of short-term parking in the area on other streets and parkades,” LaClaire said.

The city said the plan will require many parking spaces to be shorter with longer vehicles not being able to fit in many of the spots.

Annette O’Shea, executive director of the Yaletown BIA, said the 900 small businesses in Yaletown, many of which are family-owned, were extremely concerned that they “may not survive” when the plan was first announced.

Map of streets facing parking changes

O’Shea said they have added in a few parking spots that never existed before on Homer Street and in city-owned parking lots. She said the Yaletown BIA is working with the creative community to create parking spot murals, signage and a reward system, such as a free cup of coffee or discounts at some of the local businesses, for people that park properly.

Yaletown businesses and the city plan to work together to evaluate the new parking design for a year starting in April.

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Melissa is a reporter at Vancouver Is Awesome and has worked primarily in radio and online media. She grew up in Ontario, went to school in Halifax and worked in Northern B.C. before moving to Vancouver. If you've got a story to share email: melissa@vancouverisawesome.com