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No more free parking at three major West Vancouver parks

Current West Van residents may be exempted from hourly rates but will need to pay $20 per year when pay parking goes into effect on Feb. 12
It will soon cost $3.75 per hour to park at Lighthouse Park in West Vancouver, along with two other destination North Shore parks. | Paul McGrath / North Shore News

A walk in the park will always be free, but storing your car at some of West Vancouver's most popular ones is going to cost you.

Starting on Feb. 12, drivers will need to pay $3.75 per hour plus taxes and fees to park in the lots at Lighthouse, Nelson Canyon, and Whytecliff Parks, or face a $98 ticket.

District of West Vancouver council voted in May 2023 to move to a pay-parking model on a two-year pilot project as a means to raise revenue, and off-set maintenance costs at the municipality’s destination parks, which have seen huge growth in visitation in recent years.

In order to park at Lighthouse Park, Nelson Canyon and Whytecliff Park, visitors must either scan a QR code posted on signs in the parking lot and pay online, or use the hangTag or PayByPhone smartphone apps.

The district has a two-year contract with Imperial Parking, more commonly known as Impark, which will be responsible for all signage, revenue collection and enforcement. Under the agreement, the district will pay Impark a monthly fee and the company will collect a percentage share of the parking and violation ticket revenues, although the exact amount is confidential.

District staff roughly estimated the program will bring in about $255,000 per year from the 253 parking stalls available

Current West Vancouver residents may be exempted from the hourly rates, but they must pay $20 per vehicle per year, and register their vehicles’ information with Impark by uploading a copy of the vehicle registration showing a local address.

Council chose to exempt local residents from pay parking requirements because property taxes already make up the bulk of the maintenance budget for the parks.

Impark employees will be installing signs warning of the rule changes in the coming week. District staff say there will be a short grace period when Impark employees will issue warnings before the ticket book comes out. Staff are expected to report back to council on how the program is rolling out, including how it might be driving visitors to park on nearby streets, in six months.

The District of North Vancouver introduced a similar pay parking scheme for Lynn Canyon Park in 2021.

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