Jump to content

Recommended Posts

The world is welcome to park downtown

 

150 spots set aside for diplomats, staff

ANNE SUTHERLAND, The Gazette

Published: 8 hours ago

 

Parking downtown is difficult enough: Who hasn't done the "once more 'round the block" routine over and over before throwing in the towel and paying sky-high prices to park in a lot?

 

Adding to the frustration is seeing prime spots reserved for the diplomatic corps - 150 spaces in all - in the Ville Marie and Plateau Mont Royal boroughs.

 

Who are these people with special licence plates and why do they get to park - free of charge, on top of everything - in some of the most advantageous places?

Cars fill Cathcart St. parking spots designated for use by diplomatic staff. Those sites represent only a handful of the 16,800 metered parking spaces in Montreal, a city official says.View Larger Image View Larger Image

Cars fill Cathcart St. parking spots designated for use by diplomatic staff. Those sites represent only a handful of the 16,800 metered parking spaces in Montreal, a city official says.

 

For staff of consulates and employees of international organizations, like the International Air Transport Association or the International Civil Aviation Organization, free parking is part of a range of diplomatic perks.

 

Italy, for example, has its own consular building and parking lot on Doctor Penfield Ave. Many other consulates rent space in office towers downtown, however.

 

As a matter of courtesy and security, the city of Montreal designates 150 spots to international officials and consular and diplomatic staff, said Jacques-Alain Lavallée, spokesperson for the Ville Marie borough.

 

Montreal has been extending this privilege for more than 30 years, and does so "to attract international institutions and for security reasons," said François Goneau, of the city's public affairs department.

 

There are 16,800 metered parking spots in the city, so the 150 spots for consular officials represent a minuscule percentage of available street parking, he noted.

 

Michel Philibert of Stationnement de Montréal, the para-public agency that manages parking in the city, said there is no way to gauge how much revenue metered parking in those diplomatic spots might bring in.

 

Extending perks to the international market is very lucrative in the long run for Montreal, Goneau said. "It has been estimated these international organizations bring in excess of $200 million in business to the city," he said, citing a study done in 2000.

 

Only drivers with a CC (Consular Corps) or a CD (Diplomatic Corps) prefix on their licence plates are eligible to park in the diplomatic corps spots. There are 191 CC plates and 140 CD plates issued to people in Montreal, according to the Société de l'assurance automobile du Québec.

 

If you park in a spot designated for the diplomatic corps and get caught, you will get the usual $42 fine for parking in a restricted zone, Montreal police Constable Olivier Lapointe said.

 

The city receives two requests a year, on average, for diplomatic corps parking spots. If a consulate closes or moves, the designated parking spots are returned to the public, Lavallée said.

 

[email protected]

Link to comment
Share on other sites

j'ai payé 27$ a New york en fin de semaine ! Et c'est loin d'être le plus cher.

 

J'ai toujours cru que les spots diplomatique étaient réservés parceque un diplomate n'est pas tenu de payer une contravention s'il ne paie pas les parcomètres... c'est pour ça qu'ils ont les meilleurs spots.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

j'ai payé 27$ a New york en fin de semaine ! Et c'est loin d'être le plus cher.

 

J'ai toujours cru que les spots diplomatique étaient réservés parceque un diplomate n'est pas tenu de payer une contravention s'il ne paie pas les parcomètres... c'est pour ça qu'ils ont les meilleurs spots.

 

I've also heard that diplomats with 'diplomatic immunity' can't be issued parking tickets and can therefore park anywhere they want without worry. Any diplomats in here that can back that up?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...