A thief or thieves, looking for coins, vandalized three parking stations in Salmon Arm in the first week of June 2020, whose replacement will cost an estimated $25,000 total. (City of Salmon Arm image)

Parking in downtown Salmon Arm moving to two hours except for one street

Pay stations vandalized, council discusses plan for adopting credit card payments

Two-hour parking will soon be in effect in Salmon Arm’s downtown, except for one street.

At city council’s June 22 meeting, council took a stand on the long-discussed and controversial issue of whether parking downtown should be for one or two hours. Only Alexander Street will remain one-hour.

Coun. Tim Lavery was alone in voting against the decision, but on the principle of procedure, not on content. He wanted to take time to gather more input.

The decision came from a recommendation from the city’s downtown parking commission, with the reasoning that, during the coronavirus pandemic, it would assist with the economic recovery of downtown. Leaving parking as one-hour on Alexander was intended to accommodate banks and retail on the street.

The city’s director of public works and engineering, Rob Niewenhiuzen, said on June 23 that staff will be changing signage downtown and the two-hour parking should be in effect within two weeks.

Read more: Street parking in downtown Salmon Arm: Should it be limited to one hour or two?

Read more: Salmon Arm parking meters take a beating

The other issue that returned for discussion was the vandalizing of parking stations in the search for coins, and the need to go to a credit card/debit card system.

During the first week of June, three pay stations were vandalized, with an approximate total replacement cost of $25,000.

This came after the destruction of more than 100 coin-operated meters between August 2019 and February 2020. At that time it was decided to move forward with acquiring parking stations with the capacity to accommodate credit cards.

In the meantime, those newer parking stations still take coins, although they are more difficult to vandalize.

The biggest obstacle, council was told, is that the city’s accounting system does not take credit or debit cards. No types of payment, including those for parking, can be made to the city with cards.

Read more: Projected cost of Salmon Arm’s Ross Street underpass goes up by $3.5 million

Read more: New parking stations coming for Salmon Arm but they will still take coins

Coun. Chad Eliason, the city’s rep on the parking commission, said the commission is pushing for parking payment by credit card, phone and/or Interac and wants to see it fast-tracked to 2021.

He suggested that the finance department prepare a report prior to the 2021 budget to tell council what will be needed to take the next step.

Council voted unanimously in support, with Coun. Kevin Flynn stepping out due to conflict of interest guidelines.

Eliason also reiterated the commission’s disappointment with council’s decision to take $1.57 million from the general parking lot reserve earmarked for the downtown parkade to pay for cost increases projected for the Ross Street underpass.

“To be quite frank, having the funds going to the underpass has thrown the committee for a bit of a loop.”

Members of the parking commission are: council rep Chad Eliason; members at large Regan Ready, Bill Laird, Vic Hamilton and Cathy Ingebrigston; and Downtown Salmon Arm reps Jacquie Gaudreau, June Stewart, Linda Thompson and Gerald Forman. Forman was absent from the June 16 meeting. Also attending as resource people are city staff members Rob Niewenhuizen, Jenn Wilson, Kevin Pearson and Marcel Bedard.


marthawickett@saobserver.net
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

parkingSalmon Arm council

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

This is the interior of one of three parking stations destroyed in the first week of June 2020 in Salmon Arm. (City of Salmon Arm image)

Just Posted

Morning Start: Big Bertha is the oldest cow to ever live

Your morning start for Tuesday, July 14, 2020

Accused in suspected Shuswap home invasion faces additional charges

One of men charged in Dec. 28 incident faces four counts from two weeks earlier

Driver ticketed after rollover on Highway 1 near Salmon Arm

Jeep Cherokee hit rock face before rolling multiple times

Foul play not currently suspected in death of man found near Sicamous

Body found in woods near vehicle linked to Edmonton police investigation of suspicious death

B.C. records 62 new COVID-19 cases, two deaths since Friday

Province has just over 200 active cases

Canadians torn on scaling back COVID-19 benefits to save money: poll

Of those surveyed, 78 per cent said they were worried about the size of the deficit

Summerland approves solar project

Despite community opposition, council voted 4-3 for Cartwright Mountain location

Police search for suspect in assault on woman in downtown Kelowna

Kelowna police received a report a woman had been assaulted by an unknown man on July 12

‘Trauma equals addiction’: Why some seek solace in illicit drugs

Part 2: Many pushed into addiction by ‘toxic stress,’ says White Rock psychologist

Hotel rooms for B.C. homeless too hasty, NDP government told

Businesses forced out, but crime goes down, minister says

Two positive COVID-19 cases at Oliver farm

The risk of exposure to the general public related to this farm is considered to be low

Oliver Town Hall closed to public as staffer displays COVID-19 symptoms

One staff member at Oliver Town Hall is being tested for coronavirus

Wage subsidy will be extended until December amid post-COVID reopening: Trudeau

Trudeau said the extension will ‘give greater certainty and support to businesses’

Most Read