Charlottetown Transportation: Parking
Charlottetown's low volume of traffic and relaxed pace of life have produced a fairly casual attitude amongst many Island motorists. Be prepared for unsignalled turns and lane changes, etc. Charlottetown does not have much of a "rush hour," but the roads are busy during normal business hours, especially on weekdays and Saturdays, and in the downtown core.
When driving between UPEI and downtown, keep in mind that University Avenue is a poorly-planned major traffic artery: Instead, take Queen Street, virtually parallel to University but one block to the south, which also runs directly to the Delta's entrance, easing downtown navigation. Typically allow about 10 - 15 minutes to drive from UPEI to downtown.
Day-time parking situation in downtown Charlottetown is not nearly as bad as some locals say.
You can find parkades at
- The Delta, which charges $1/hr (maximum of $8/day)
- the Pownal Parkade (368-3653) a few blocks from the Delta reasonably priced at 60 cents/hour, (max $3.60/day).
- UPEI on-campus parking is free from May to August, except for a small number of clearly-signposted "Reserved" spaces.
To avoid parkades, allow an extra 10 - 15 minutes to find a parking space on nearby streets. Metered parking on downtown streets cost 50 cents/hour (with a 2 hour time limit). Most metered spaces are of the old-style, diagonal, "nose-in" variety, which are okay until you have to back out into traffic. For those willing to walk an extra block or two, un-metered, curb-side parking can usually be found on side streets (with a 1 or 2 hour time limit).
Meter Parking is enforced Monday to Friday from 8:00 am until 5:00 pm, and is free Saturday, Sunday, and holidays.
Parking enforcement is rigorous, especially in metered zones, so you can expect a ticket if you overstay your time (the fine for a meter violation is only $5 if paid within 7 days). There are no restrictions on overnight street parking, except in designated no-parking zones. Vehicle-related theft and vandalism are quite rare in Charlottetown, but vehicles left unattended on the street overnight obviously present tempting targets.