Councillor says Square parking lot should be for customers

Published on July 16, 2014

NEW GLASGOW – A former downtown businesswoman says too many non-shopping customers are filling up valuable parking spaces in Glasgow Square.

New Glasgow town councillor Trudy Vince said during a committee of the whole meeting Monday that the spots in front of Glasgow Square should be used by shoppers rather than business owners who park their vehicles there from morning to night.

“The Glasgow Square parking lot is full at 8 a.m. and not by customers,” she said. “When I drove in, I had to back out because there was no exit and people were parked everywhere.”

Vince said she has heard there have been some fender bender accidents in the parking lot because of the cramped parking situation and asked if the town’s traffic authority could come up with a solution to the problem.

“The people using the Square parking lot are people who do services and don’t rely on customers,” she said.

Town CAO Lisa MacDonald said the town had tried different tactics in the past to discourage business owners from parking in the Square lot, but all they got were angry phone calls rather than positive results.

She said during the Christmas holidays, the town closed the lot until 10 a.m. in hopes of having spots available for shoppers, but business owners still continued to fill the parking spots.

“We tried to work with people as best as possible, but we don’t have a solution,” she said. “The people it is intended for are not using it.”

Coun. Henderson Paris suggested that a letter be sent to property owners to address the problem and highlight the fact that a free parking space is available near the farmers market.

Town engineer Earl MacKenzie said repainting the lines in the parking lot might also help some of the cramped quarters in the parking lot, but this would not be done until other priority work was done around the town.