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City to end free parking

The cash-strapped Corporation of Hamilton is to introduce pay-and-display parking tariffs on all roads in the city in an effort to increase revenues.

And plans for an “aggressive” car clamping policy and an increase in the number of traffic wardens on the streets are also in the pipeline as the municipality struggles to maintain essential infrastructure services.

Next month, parking fees will be introduced to streets that historically motorists have not had to pay to park on, while parking rates will also change.

The Corporation's Chief Operating Officer and Secretary to the City of Hamilton, Edward Benevides said: “It is anticipated that in mid- to late-October, all streets in the city will become pay and display streets. The city has been divided into three parking zones. There will be different prices for different zones in the city.”

Also starting next month, vehicles parked illegally on the streets of the City will be clamped. Currently, the Corporation only clamps vehicles illegally parked in its own car parks, while traffic wardens, who work for the Bermuda Police Service, are responsible for issuing parking tickets throughout Hamilton.

But Mr Benevides said that the municipality had regularly received complaints from residents whose own parking spaces have been “continually” used by other motorists.

“We will be addressing this matter by aggressively clamping cars parked in spaces designated for residents,” he warned.

But in one piece of good news for motorists, the daily rate to leave vehicles at Bull's Head and Elliott Street car parks will be reduced from $7 to $5. Easy Park meters and pay and display tickets will continue to be in use within these car parks and will be adjusted to reflect the new price structure.

Mr Benevides said City chiefs had addressed parking issues “holistically” and that the changes “will benefit all motorists who use the streets of Hamilton”.

But he also implied that the primary reason the measures were being introduced was “to generate new revenue to restore and maintain the infrastructure of the city”.

“Given the declining revenues, the City has had to eliminate and reduce a number of services in order to maintain a balanced budget,” he said.

“One of the services which has suffered over the years is the resurfacing of city streets. With the new revenue generated, we will use that money to begin a street resurfacing programme, which is one of the infrastructure programmes that will be re-established or upgraded and maintained. Others include modernising the City's sewage structure and a comprehensive review of the drainage system.”

Mr. Benevides added that “a number of new Parking Enforcement personnel have been hired in the last few weeks” which had resulted in an increase in the number of vehicles clamped.

“In order to avoid being clamped motorists are urged to read the signage on the sidewalks and in car parks before they park and leave their vehicles,” Mr Benevides said.

“Full details of the ordinance together with the new City Parking Zones Map can be found on our website. As we move forward with the campaign, I will encourage everyone to return to for updates and information on the parking changes that will be implemented.”

*The city has been divided into three parking zones. There will be different prices for different zones in the city. The zones and per hour rates are as follows;

Zone 1 parking will cost $2.00 an hour and covers all streets between Front Street and Church Street, including Church Street.

Zone 2 parking will cost $1.50 an hour and covers all streets between Church Street and Dundonald Street, including Dundonald Street.

Zone 3 parking will cost $1.00 an hour and covers all streets between Dundonald Street and North Street.

The new parking zones for Hamilton.

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Published September 23, 2013 at 9:00 am (Updated September 22, 2013 at 11:44 pm)

City to end free parking

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