Winnipeg mayoral candidate Rana Bokhari is proposing a levy on the city’s surface parking lots if elected.
Bokhari says surface lots are currently a “blight” on the city and the funds generated from such levies should go towards transit and active transportation.
Surface parking lots contribute to safety concerns, discourage pedestrians and active transportation, and diminish the vitality and connectedness of our neighbourhoods, said Bokhari.
“As I’ve been campaigning, I have spoken with so many small business owners who are the lifeblood of our communities,” Bokhari said in a release. “But one of the issues they’ve raised repeatedly is that they wish they could utilize and optimize their full properties.”
If elected on October 26, Bokhari says she would implement new zoning by-laws to establish upper limits on the number of parking spots needed for a local business.
A new $100 annual levy on the required number of parking spots for businesses would also be introduced, along with a $350 annual levy on parking spots that exceed that number.
Based on estimates from 2006, the 92,000 unmetered parking spots in surface lots in the city could generate about $20 million in annual revenue for Winnipeg.
“My vision for Winnipeg is to build a vibrant, connected city that will encourage small businesses to grow and increase our density, in a sustainable and sensible way.”