Downtown Parking Master Plan

Sep 25, 2023

Dear Mayor Guthrie and Members of Council,

The Guelph Chamber of Commerce agrees with staff that investment in parking is an investment in housing, economic vitality and produces economic multipliers. We are pleased to see some best practice principles applied to the Downtown Parking Master Plan, including ‘parking as housing potential’.

We do encourage the City to consider implementing parking pricing strategies not in isolation, but as part of an overall transportation demand management program that considers intensification across the city.

A more progressive approach to parking management and reduction will encourage sustainable mobility and create opportunities to build compact, people-oriented communities. As such, similar to communities in our region and across North America, we recommend reducing parking minimums to between 0-0.5 spaces per unit to effectively accelerate residential development and density in our transit oriented downtown.

Additionally, municipalities can lead retail parking rates by structuring prices of public parking to maintain an 85-90% occupancy rate. For example, the City could consider pricing minimum daily and short-term parking equivalent to a round-trip transit fare. Flexible pricing that encourages short stays and increases rates for longer stays may strike a balance for customers and retailers alike.

As always, we welcome the opportunity for increased meaningful engagement alongside a cross-section of industry and community stakeholders to ensure effective public policy decisions lead to desired outcomes for our city.

Thank you for the consideration,

Shakiba Shayani President & CEO


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