January 12, 2018 3:26 pm
Updated: January 12, 2018 6:14 pm

Towed and ticked off: Winnipeg driver demands answers after downtown parking ticket

A Winnipeg driver said this no stopping sign is the only one on Hargrave telling people not to park.

Walther Bernal / Global News

A man is speaking out against parking in Downtown Winnipeg after receiving what he calls a “ridiculous” ticket.

Paul Vezeau and his 8-year-old son were left out in freezing late night temperatures with a dead cellphone, no ride and a hefty parking ticket and tow after Monday night’s Manitoba Moose game.

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The strip Vezeau parked on, which is on Hargrave Street just off of Portage Avenue, has a pole on it with no signs, and a single square “no stopping” marking against a building. But the sign is only on the far side of the sidewalk — not near the road, like the majority of parking indicators — which Vezeau said made it impossible to see.

RELATED: Winnipeggers complain about ‘confusing’ Saturday parking rules

“All the other signs are within a foot from the curb, but this one is 15 to 20 feet away under a burnt-out streetlight,” Vezeau said. “It might as well be on River Road.

“[When I got out of my car] I looked at the pole to find any signage and there was none that I could find anywhere that says you couldn’t park there.”

Vezeau said he and up to 15 others parked on Hargrave Monday and left the game to towed cars and hefty tickets.

The group weren’t the first to be issued violations in the area. The city confirmed that 25 tickets were handed out on the strip between Portage and Ellice in December alone.

RELATED: City reviewing free Saturday parking practices and not enforcing tickets

The city declined an on-camera interview, but sent a statement saying “the tows were validly ordered”.

Vezeau challenged the ticket and told Global News Friday the city agreed to let him off with a warning.  But he’s still on the hook for the $118 towing fee.

“I was absolutely astonished.”

“They can understand and realize the situation but they can’t reimburse the towing,” Vezeau said. “It’s almost contradictory.”

He has approached the city and said he’ll be fighting the fee in small claims court.

© 2018 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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