For the first three weekends of December, holiday shoppers will be able to park free of charge on weekends in the community of Inglewood, east of downtown.
The Inglewood Business Revitalization Zone (BRZ) and the Calgary Parking Authority have partnered up for the second year in a row in an attempt to promote business in the neighbourhood, as part of the Christmas in Inglewood promotion campaign.
“We’re just trying to get new faces down to Inglewood to rediscover a shopping area that maybe they’re not aware of,” explains communications contractor for Inglewood BRZ Kelly Doody.
“We’re showing people that there is an alternative to the shopping mall, and that free parking is one of the bonuses that come along with it.”
The program includes two large paved lots with free parking on Saturdays and Sundays, as well as free street parking along 9th Avenue S.E. on Sundays.
Doody says that the free parking hasn’t yet caused any shortage of available spaces.
“Inglewood’s great because on all sides of the main drag there’s plenty of residential parking so people might have to walk a couple blocks, which they’ve been doing, but there’s been no issues and no shortage of parking.”
Besides free parking, the Christmas in Inglewood program also features a holiday decoration campaign, including about a million lights, according to Doody.
“At night time the whole neighbourhood comes alive,” she said, adding that some merchants even give out free food and drink to their patrons on Thursday nights through the weekend.
“There’s just tons of festive holiday cheer, Santa’s walking around, the carollers are out so there’s lots of just general Christmas cheer I would say.”
Doody credits the City of Calgary for providing the funding for the Business Revitalization Zone which includes Inglewood, 17th Ave, Marda Loop, and Kensington.
“We’ve had such amazing support from the city and that’s what makes it all happen.”