Park Smart campaign aims to inform people about parking options downtown

Finding a parking spot in Nanaimo’s downtown could be a little easier thanks to a new map identifying parking locations in the city’s core.

The Downtown Nanaimo Business Improvement Association launched a Park Smart campaign to help people shopping and visiting the downtown core learn about parking choices in the area. The campaign, which runs until Oct. 15, aims to dispel myths that there is no parking in the downtown core by giving people tips and information about optional parking locations that might not be widely known.

“We don’t think this campaign will fix the parking issues downtown,” said Corry Hostetter, the general manager of DNBIA, adding it’s a campaign to give people more information about what parking is available. “We want to bring awareness to people.”

She said the information will help people plan on where to park when they know it will be busy, such as when events are held in the Old City Quarter, in Diana Krall Plaza or on Commercial Street.

The association has created a map as part of a brochure, which will include helpful parking tips and identify locations of on-street parking,  bike racks, disabled parking spots and parkades.

The association printed about 30,000 maps, which will be available at downtown businesses and delivered to people’s homes.

People can win weekly prizes by entering the Park Smart campaign contest online or at participating downtown businesses, which includes the Nanaimo Museum, Vancouver Island Symphony, Gabriel’s Café, Artzi Stuff, the Palace Hotel, Nanaimo Conservatory of Music and the City of Nanaimo offices.

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