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Parking made easy (OK, easier)

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Halifax’s parking-related frustrations show no signs of abating. Just after the January issue of Halifax Magazine hit mailboxes and newsstands, we received an email in response to “Parking (and surviving) in downtown Halifax” from a Dartmouth man named Gordon.

Gordon is frustrated by the difficulty of finding parking, combined with the inconveniences represented by The Big Lift. Specifically, he writes, “I know of one Haligonian who has dropped her theatre subscription to a Dartmouth theatre due to the Macdonald Bridge closures and several more who have simply stopped going to Halifax from Dartmouth, particularly in the evening, for social and entertainment events.”

Well, we can’t stop The Big Lift. But we’ve reached out to a few different sources for ideas that might make parking in the area a little easier.

Andrea Rahal, Inkwell Modern Handmade Boutique

“My parents are Neptune subscribers and they go to every show. They use the Metro Park. And once the Nova Centre’s built there will be underground parking there. But so many parking spaces have been taken up by construction.”

This last part is certainly a challenge, especially since Rahal notes that the construction workers have been parking in the metered spots near the shop. She wonders if there is any interest in a downtown shuttle for big events.

Lil MacPherson, The Wooden Monkey
“Take the ferry. People need to realize how easy it is. At night, you can park at the ferry terminal for free. And poof, you’re in Halifax! And you have a wonderful ride. I took the ferry for 18 years. But I do think we need to push for the ferry to run later.”

And if you need a little extra incentive to go downtown, MacPherson’s offering more than parking advice. If you go to The Wooden Monkey and show a day-of Mooseheads or Neptune ticket, you’ll get
a 20 per cent discount on your meal.

Jennie King, Neptune Theatre
“We’ve done our best to get in front of it. We connect with local businesses like the Gio Restaurant where we sell an amazing dinner package that includes two tickets, a two-course meal for two at Gio, and free parking. It’s $189 plus tax. That’s a ridiculously good night downtown.”

We also spoke to Brendan Elliott, senior communications advisor for the Halifax Regional Municipality, who commented that the reduced parking is quite literally “short-term pain for long-term gain.”

“The construction of the Nova Centre has seen the removal of 52 paid parking spots on the perimeter of the construction zone (including 22 spots along Grafton Street where Ramia purchased the actual street),” says Elliott.

“However, I think it’s important to point out that when the Nova Centre is finished there will be approximately 400 parking spots created inside the complex,” he says. “Approximately 100 of those spots will be dedicated to hourly and monthly parking.”

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