Mission’s bylaw enforcement officers will be keeping a closer eye on vehicles that are parked downtown before 8 a.m.
The district will also be putting up signs warning drivers their vehicles could be towed away if they are caught in violation of the rules.
Downtown parking is one of the issues Mission council will be trying to address as part of an effort to help revitalize downtown.
“Quite a few people go and park on Horne Street (south of Second Avenue) to go to the West Coast Express, and leave their cars there all day even though the signs say no parking before 8 a.m.,” said Mayor Randy Hawes, who proposed putting up additional signage to indicate the area is a tow away zone. “They need to park at the West Coast Express parking lot.”
Councillor Jim Hinds said he drove the the WCE parking lot on Friday and only counted eight vehicles there.
WCE riders who leave their vehicles downtown all day take away parking spaces from downtown merchants and customers, said Carlo Billinger, president of the Mission Downtown Business Association.
The DBA will leave a note on any vehicle parked downtown which members have identified as belonging to a WCE rider.
“It doesn’t cost that much to park at the WCE and it’s patrolled down there,” added Billinger.
Vehicles have been towed in the past, but the problem comes up again because the rules are not consistently enforced, said Billinger.
Mission’s director of development services, Mike Younie, said bylaw staff check on vehicles that are parked downtown before 8 a.m. occasionally, but haven’t found too many issues.
“We’ll talk to the DBA to find the hot spots,” offered Younie.
DBA representatives also plan to meet with council early next year to refocus plans to revitalize downtown.