Under the new system, which takes effect July 1, Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie will now charge $115 for a gas-powered – or non-plug-in hybrid – vehicle weighing 1,249 kg or less. The bill will go up to $205 for those whose mass exceeds 1600 kg. Owners of electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles will not escape this, but in their case, the categories will be a little different. Thus, the bill will be $115 if their vehicle weighs less than 1550 kg and will go up to $205 for a vehicle weighing 1850 kg or more. It will cost $385 to obtain a sticker for a second vehicle, regardless of its weight.
The borough recognizes that its pricing system will result in a “slight increase” in the bill for the average motorist. The best-selling vehicle in Canada across all categories, the Ford F-150 will inherit the highest bill. Its average weight of 2274 kg places it at the very top of the pricing scale. The majority of sport utility vehicles (SUVs) will also be at the top of the scale. Weighing from 1525 kg to 1950 kg depending on the equipment, a Toyota RAV4 will result in a bill of $175 to $205. To pay the lower rate, you will have to drive a vehicle such as the Toyota Yaris, which weighs between 980 kg and 1120 kg. Note: “provisions” will nevertheless be made “to limit the costs for people with reduced mobility and low income”.
For now, Montreal boroughs set the price of their parking permits based on the size of the engine capacity of the vehicles. General rule: the more gas your vehicle consumes, the more expensive the sticker will be. Rosemont–La Petite-Patrie, however, says today that “the best data” to testify to the public space occupied by a vehicle when parked is its net mass. “The engines have evolved, there is no longer an exact correlation between the engine capacity and the size of the vehicles. We see this in particular in the fact that there are more and more large vehicles with small engines, ”says the mayor of the borough, François Limoges, in an interview with La Presse. “What we would like to price ideally is the size. But we don’t have it. We have the weight, that said, in the registers of the SAAQ, ”he continues.
According to Mr. Limoges, it is becoming more and more expensive for the boroughs to manage parking. Citizens often denounce the disappearance of parking spaces, but the increase in the size of vehicles reduces the number of spaces available. “Cars are taking up more and more space. In our sector, the increase in the size of automobiles has led to the reduction of 4,000 to 10,000 parking spaces, therefore approximately 10 to 25% of spaces. And that’s for a single borough: I’ll let you imagine on the scale of Quebec,” breathes the elected municipal official. For him, the reality is very simple: “Manufacturers systematically put bigger vehicles on the market, except that they forget that all this has a growing cost for infrastructure”. “A RAM 150 takes the place of two Yaris on the street. This must be taken into account, ”insists the mayor.
François Limoges does not hide the fact that he hopes to “snowball” with his new pricing regulations. “We’re also hoping to start a conversation about vehicle sizing more broadly, for other people to look into this and consider the impact on safety as well.” This discussion needs to happen,” he said. His administration also hopes to “encourage those who have no choice but to use a vehicle in their travels to opt for smaller formats, or better, for car sharing”. Ultimately, adds the elected official, the goal is “the adoption of active modes of transport and the reduction of dependence on the automobile”.
“Studies show that the bigger the vehicle, the greater the risk of collisions due to unlimited visibility. […] I therefore really invite the mayors of the other boroughs to take a close interest in this question,” said Montreal Mayor Valérie Plante on Tuesday, who however promises not to do “wall-to-wall” -wall” with these kinds of measurements. Its borough, Ville-Marie, has also adopted pricing measures related to eco-taxation in recent years. The Director of Government Relations at Équiterre, Marc-André Viau, believes that “this modernization of the regulations is major and will inevitably have a ripple effect on the regulations for on-street parking throughout Quebec, because all municipalities are grappling with the same issues.”