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Drumheller Paid Parking Program Launch Date Set for May 1, 2024

Posted on Feb. 7 2024

At the Regular Council Meeting on February 5, 2024, Council approved launching the paid parking program in designated parking areas in the Drumheller Valley, beginning on May 1, 2024, and concluding on October 31, 2024. The paid parking program intends to generate an otherwise unexplored source of revenue to assist with necessary upgrades and infrastructure maintenance to areas impacted by increased visitors to the Drumheller Valley. All residents are eligible to apply online for a free Residential Parking Permit, which permits parking in areas otherwise designated for paid parking.  

Annually, the paid parking program will be implemented from May 1 to October 31, and will be enforced between the hours of 9:00am and 9:00pm daily. The paid parking program will cover a number of parking lots and areas situated on or near tourist attractions. The areas included in the paid parking program are: 

  • Badlands Community Facility parking lot 
  • Hoodoos parking lot 
  • Rotary Park (World’s Largest Dinosaur) parking lot 
  • Street parking along Riverside Drive E 
  • Suspension Bridge parking lot
  • Town-owned parking lot on 1 Street E 
  • Town-owned parking lot on 2 Avenue W 
  • Town-owned parking lot on the corner of 2 Street W and Riverside 

For a full detailed program map, please click here. 

From October 1, 2023, until October 31, 2023, the Town launched a paid parking pilot project, which was put in place with the intention of managing the risks associated with program implementation and to test the approaches used for implementation further in the program. On December 18, 2023, the Department of Emergency and Protective Services brought forward a presentation to Council to summarize the outcomes of the paid parking pilot project. In the report, it was determined that, as of December 1, 2023, 349 vehicles were registered for Residential Parking Permits.  

Throughout the pilot period, concerns and comments were brought forward, and solutions were explored and considered. For the first year of the program, it was recommended that the only exemptions be the Residential Parking Permit and HotSpot Moderated Permit. The moderation of exemptions being provided will give Administration the opportunity to accurately analyze the effectiveness of aspects of the program and will know what to adjust and explore moving forward. 

With the Residential Parking Permit, residents can park for free in lots and areas designed for paid parking. Residents can apply for a Residential Parking Permit by following the steps outlined on drumheller.ca. In addition to the Residential Parking Permits, and as a means of ensuring that those with recreation memberships and those hosting meetings, conferences, weddings and other events are considered, a HotSpot Moderated Permit can be set up. A HotSpot Moderated Permit will include an exemption that will be active for the length of a recreation membership, or for the duration of an event. 

"The paid parking program is a way that the Town of Drumheller can recover some of the costs to Drumheller taxpayers that are associated with increasing tourism in the Valley,” says Councillor Tom Zariski. “A good example of this is the renovations at the Swinging Bridge. The visitors who want to experience the bridge will be charged for parking at this popular tourist destination, and the money will go to Town expenses associated with the recent renovations.” 

The Department of Emergency and Protective Services anticipates having additional seasonal personnel hired and educated to enforce paid parking rules in the designated paid parking areas for the duration of the paid parking period. One officer will be dedicated to the area around the World’s Largest Dinosaur and Memorial Arena to aid in using and understanding the HotSpot Parking system. Following the commencement of the first year of the paid parking program, Administration will bring forward a report with findings and an assessment on the program, and adjustments to the program will be explored as necessary moving forward. 

To learn more about the paid parking program in the Town of Drumheller, please click here. 

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