Draft Parking Master Plan Reflects Needs of Growing Downtown; City Seeks Feedback

The City of Fredericton has received the first draft of its Parking Master Plan, a document that anticipates the future needs of businesses and residents and keeps pace with the city’s growing and vibrant downtown.  The draft plan, prepared by Stantec, provides a strategic direction with respect to downtown parking and was presented today to members of the City’s Transportation Committee.

Residents looking for more information are invited to review the plan and provide input by visiting the City’s website at www.fredericton.ca and searching “Parking Master Plan”.  Comments will be accepted until April 10, 2019.

“We know that 85% of the parking spaces downtown are occupied at any given time, which is a great economic indicator,” said Coun. Kevin Darrah, Chair of the City’s Transportation Committee.  “As our downtown continues to grow commercially and residentially, a master plan is needed to provide guidance and direction on efficient and effective parking strategies that will foster development and encourage use of sustainable transportation.  This document provides us with a road map to successfully balance the needs of residents, businesses and visitors.”

The plan provides direction for what it identifies as three key over-arching themes critical for success in the short and long term.  They include:

  1. Technology enhancements
  2. Pricing strategies
  3. Supply and demand management

Immediate short-term recommendations include partnering with Kings Place or another developer in the City Centre to construct a new parking structure and / or indentifying a potential location for a new parking structure; and investing in more sophisticated pay station equipment and technology to improve data collection and customer service.

Short to medium-term recommendations include establishing a competitive fare structure to encourage off street parking for daily  or monthly use, freeing spaces and increasing turnover rates; and identifying locations for park-and-ride lots in anticipated growth areas of the city with convenient access to public transit.

Longer term recommendations include integrating and promoting shared mobility services as a potential parking demand management tool; and monitoring progress of autonomous vehicle use and trends.

Other recommendations include partnering with large downtown employers to promote alternative travel modes to and from work for their employees, and the creation of commuter parking zones through a pilot initiative which is anticipated to moderately increase parking supply in the short-term.

Upon completion of the online comment period, City staff will work with the consultant to finalize a draft plan and incorporate considerations from City Council and community stakeholders.  The final draft plan is expected in May 2019.

About the Consultation

In forming the plan, Fredericton Parking Services engaged stakeholders with a broad spectrum of interests including downtown businesses, residents, and patrons, various levels of government and members of the greater Fredericton community.

Stakeholders were consulted beginning in 2017 via internal and external group meetings, public engagement sessions and surveys, and on-street interviews.

About Parking Services

The City of Fredericton manages 584 on-street parking spaces, and operates a number of parking facilities including a number of surface lots and two parking garages.  All meter and monthly parking rates include HST.

About Stantec

Stantec is a Canadian-based global design firm with a local office in Fredericton.