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New residential parking restrictions on Verdun street frustrate drivers, residents

Click to play video: 'New parking restrictions on Verdun street has some residents seeing red'
New parking restrictions on Verdun street has some residents seeing red
WATCH: Verdun residents and teachers who work in the area are up in arms after new street parking restrictions have left them scrambling to find a spot. – Dec 2, 2021

Cars parked on Riverview Avenue in the Montreal borough of Verdun are decked out with a new yellow parking sector stickers.

New residential parking restrictions have been implemented on the residential street and not everyone is pleased by the measure.

“I really didn’t see the need to implement permits on our street. I don’t think they were necessary,” said Verdun resident Andrea Dumouchel.

Dumouchel says she and others in the area whose homes are in one of the designated sections were strong-armed into buying the $82 permit.

Even more frustrating, she says, her second vehicle permit cost double, costing her a total of $244 in fees.

READ MORE: Villeray neighbourhood struggles with parking woes during construction blitz

“Up until they put in these restrictions, I never had a problem. I was always able to find parking super easy close to my house,” resident James Coyle said.

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Coyle works in the restaurant industry and often comes home early in the morning when most parking places are already taken.

Living a block away, across from a small park, Coyle says he often parked on Riverview because of the availability.

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“In my opinion there was never an issue. There was never a lack of parking. I never struggled like I do now,” Coyle said.

Click to play video: 'What’s so cool about Verdun?'
What’s so cool about Verdun?

While residents are copping with the changes, teachers at Riverview Elementary are as well. More than 30 teachers and staff are now left scrambling to find parking spots as Riverview Elementary school does not have a parking lot.

Staff like Veronica Amar say they have been parking on the street for more than 30 years without any issue, until now.

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“I just want a place where we can all park. It’s stressful in the morning, we think about it before getting into work,” Amar said.

Amar, who car pools to work, says many of the sections not reserved for permits are taken up by cars who pay for reserved parking.

“A lot of the people that do have the vignettes park in the only areas where we are allowed to park, meanwhile the reserved spots are completely empty,” Amar said.

READ MORE: Free parking evenings, weekends coming to downtown Montreal for holiday season

A number of letters and even a petition calling for the restrictions to be removed have been sent to the borough administration.

Residents were notified by the borough and were asked to vote on the impending change in August according to residents.

“People that don’t own cars if they received this paper they probably threw it out thinking it didn’t pertain to them,” Dumouchel said.

“I think it was done in a deceitful way.”

Borough councilor Stirling Downey says he has been in constant contact with the school principal regarding this issue.

According to the borough, the decision to convert parking on the street came after requests from residents.

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In a statement the borough says residents were advised months ahead of time and given the option to vote against the implementation of the parking restrictions.

Only 30 per cent of the parking spaces between Bannantyne and Monteith on the street have been converted to residents-only parking spaces.

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