Are drivers in Toronto scraping to get out of slow moving lines of parked cars? Sometimes, yes.
After reports surfaced last year that drivers were getting tickets when parking on clear pavement, a “Mixed Mapping Index” was created in late December that plots out the yellow lines on such streets with “Slow Traffic” traffic lights. If you do not enter into an exit lane, you will receive a $106 ticket.
Cities across the country are attempting to grapple with the rising need for parking spaces as well as the contentious debate over street sweeping.
Toronto is only a week into the 2019 municipal season, but its Wardens Guide suggests that parking-zone enforcement is starting to ramp up with a “constant yellow line” across the city that could last up to 28 days, unless the rate of cars moving ahead of the line is zero. Motorists are in fact warned to expect the yellow light to change or receive a ticket.
Ed Egan (@ederickgan) “Mixed Mapping Index”. @CityofToronto creates a system showing different locations where drivers will be given parking tickets if they don’t move along within time pic.twitter.com/Lc3FBkM6tS
The new system, launched on Christmas Eve, wasn’t put into place last year in response to the issue of tickets in February 2018 that Newfoundlander Kenneth Joyce received.
Joyce was parking his truck on a multi-use path along Driftwood Drive in the city’s Enfield neighbourhood when he heard a police officer’s loudspeaker call to move his car.
“I didn’t want to move,” he told CBC. “So I was driving forward and then I stepped on it. That was probably the biggest mistake I’ve ever made.”
Joyce, who parked his vehicle only 10 centimetres from the edge of the path, tried unsuccessfully to contact his insurance company for a ticket-free ticket and was later informed that, even if he simply continued to drive his vehicle, police would issue a ticket.
Iggy Cano (@icoycano) Ooooo this is awkward 😄!!! #ianbholliday pic.twitter.com/D0erqO6nvS
Constable Adam Norris, a spokesman for Toronto police, said the ticket was issued because Joyce parked too close to the yellow line but “was moving once the officer arrived”.
“The ticket cannot be applied retrospectively, but the officer is still on the case,” he said.
Norris said Joyce’s vehicle “was safe and could be moved in normal traffic conditions and was able to be easily moved without incident”.
Anyone who refuses to move from a yellow line risks a fine of $97.78 to $106.27. The system was made possible by technology company Zebra Solutions, whose mobile devices are used by Toronto police to create the traffic alerts.
“With the new algorithm we created, you can put up with the possibility of some give-and-take on certain streets depending on the condition,” Robert Meyer, director of engineering and operations at Zebra, told CBC.