About the Blog:

Guelph Politico is locally sourced and dedicated to covering the political and cultural scene in the City of Guelph. Est. 2008.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Parking Wars

Déjà vu. It was a case of déjà vu today when along Westwood, people trying to get the bus, or perhaps otherwise just trying to get around or enjoy their neighbourhood, had to deal with the traffic nightmare illustrated in the slideshow below. 
When the 2012 budget was announced a few weeks ago, it wasn't the sale of the city's street poles to Guelph Hydro that caught my eye as much as the proposed rate increase for bus passes and tickets. Yes, there's another budget deficit, and again the council's solution is to put a premium on the few who actually support a vital service to this city. It would be nice if this premium was going to secure the service and making it as convenient and efficient as possible, but as this incident proves, this is not the case.
A track event was being held in Margaret Greene Park by Athletics Ontario and was a very well attended track meet. So much so that that the parking lot at a nearby school was full, along with the lot at the park, and all along Westwood from Rhonda Rd to Willow. Of course there were also people parked on the lawn, parked along the bridge over the Hanlon, and in no parking areas in from of the bus stops. 
The killer is that at this event last year there where the exact same thing happened. Events like these don't spring out of the ground, and I know that the city received a number of complaints last year about the entire affair - one of which cam from me. But recently I've discovered that if you want real action on an issue you need more than your word. 
Basically, I submit that the city should have realized that this was coming, and should have informed transit and by-law to have people there ready to ticket every scofflaw and law-breaker. Yes, let's be clear, they are breaking the law. And they are not alone. There's literally millions of dollars in outstanding moving violations owed to this city, but we increase the fees on transit users, and treat car drivers with soft gloves. 
There's a tremendous entitlement with drivers, but driving and car ownership are not rights. You also do not have the right to park anywhere you feel like because there are no other parking places near the location you need to be at. I implore the City of Guelph to lower the boom on these people. By-laws matter, and people who take the bus have every right to properly access their vehicle.

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