Friday, December 14, 2007

Victoria has some parking issues, especially downtown. Not so unusual for a city like this I guess. There are a handful of parkades and street parking with meters downtown and some areas like in Cook Street Village there is free parking if you visit a business where the lot is and some side street have 1 or 2 hour limits as well.

We went to look at a place on View Street recently, which is downtown. We thought we would not be in too long so we did street parking with the meter, and to our lovely surprise, there was 37 minutes on it! We thought that was perfect, and that it was plenty of time. Until we saw the guy had a Mac, and the programs he was using, and then discussing one of them as it turns out he is a developer of it. And so the time went by. Normally, I set the alarm on my cell to go off 5, 10, or 15 minutes before the parking is up (depends where we are and how long it might take to get back to the car) but I didn't this time, thinking 37 minutes is plenty of time to look at a 1 BR + den.

We both walked out of the building and realized we had totally forgotten about the meter and wondered if we'd gone over. As we got closer to the van, we saw a brightly coloured piece of paper under the windshield wiper and we both said, "uh oh" as we got closer. When we got to the car, we were pleasantly surprised. This is what the paper said on it:

City of Victoria

Courtesy Parking Ticket

We welcome your business, we love you to shop
We have wonderful stores which entice you to stop
The gifts are so lovely you could linger all day
(You've forgotten the meter is ticking away)

Your poor car is so scared that it's starting to shake
However, it's Christmas, so we'll give you a break
Instead of a ticket we'll give you a hint
Which will make your car happier and save you a mint

Did you know there's a parkade on Broughton or View?
If you're shopping on Johnson, there's one near there too
Bastion Square, Fisgard, Yates - they're all over the place!
It's much easier than jostling for tight meter space

The first hour is free - ask at stores for a sticker
They helped pay the cost so there's no need to dicker
Just turn over this ticket for the parkade that's nearest
And then happily go shopping for gifts for your dearest


The back does indeed have a map of the parkades around downtown and the ticket is printed on red paper. There is some writing on it also, probably to track it and ensure we don't reuse it.

But I thought that was quite nice, especially as the meter maids in the city have a rep for being on the strict side. Ruthless I think someone said.


Helena said...

Wow, you're living in a city/country where they're not afraid to say Merry Christmas. How correct is that!!!!

Jim Donato said...

The same thing happened to Sue in Asheville. She got a warnig ticket that took pains to explain the whys and wherefores of why parking tickets are issued in a helpful, informative manner. Parking Ticket Issues: The REAL measure of a city's worth!