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12 resident-only parking spaces proposed in South Yorkson area

Langley Township is considering installing 12 temporary on-street parking stalls to address a shortage of spaces in South Yorkson.

The suggestion is contained in a Feb. 3 staff report to council that says, if approved, the spots would be located at the corner of 212 Street and 80 Avenue at a cost of $50,000.

It would only be temporary, the report warned, because the area “is part of a future road realignment.”

The report goes on to insist that the “parking supply in the neighbourhood is consistent with the requirements of the zoning bylaw” but admits there is additional demand for parking because some houses have secondary suites.

“Staff will be undertaking a review of best practices and alternatives to address this concern,” says the memo from the Township engineering division.

Some homeowners have suggested introducing “residents only” parking or time-limited parking, but both options were rejected by the report.

“The Township does not have the permitting process, the administrative, or enforcement structure necessary to implement such a program” the report said.

The parking problem in South Yorkson has become severe because about 150 roadside parking spaces on three different streets designated as major “arterial” roads were recently eliminated by the Township, including spaces along the four-lane-wide stretch of 80 avenue.

Over the holidays, following complaints from residents about a shortage of available parking, Township council agreed to allow vehicles in the no-parking areas of 80 Avenue so visitors would not be forced to park several blocks away.

But now the ban is back.

When the issue came up at a January council meeting, Councillor Charlie Fox said while he is sympathetic to the residents’ struggle to find enough parking paces, there is a potential legal problem with lifting the parking regulations.

That’s because the residents all signed a legally binding covenant when they bought their houses that specifies no parking on 80 Avenue or 212 Street.

Overriding that restriction could open up a “huge Pandora’s box,” Fox warned.

“There’s some due diligence that needs to be done before we walk into this hornet’s nest,” Fox said.

Councillor Kim Richter said Township regulations don’t require enough parking in new residential developments like South Yorkson.

“They are living in a nightmare and they have come to us for help,” said Richter, who went on to call it a “nightmare we [council] have created.”

Richter has served notice she will be asking the rest of council to support the 12 new parking spots proposed in the report.

Editor's note — Langley Township council discussed this issue at its Monday meeting, and a report on that discussion will appear on this website soon.

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