Morningside Heights residents being ticketed unfairly

Residents in Morningside Heights are being ticketed outside of their homes unfairly, says Morningside Heights Residents’ Association president Chris Balsingh.

“Residents are complaining, parking officers are coming at night and when they come out they’re finding tickets all the time,” Balsingh said. “It’s almost like the tag officer is sitting in the neighbourhood and targeting the area.”

Despite the housing development being nearly seven years old, the City of Toronto has yet to put up signs in the area advising residents where they can and cannot park.

“I think if people saw signs at least they could agree with the tag officer,” Balsingh said.  “There is a sense of compliance.

“People can only obey based on what they know, with no signs up.”

The parking issue became a political topic in many of Ward 42 candidates’ platforms, with many candidates vowing to ease restrictions in the area.

“They’re being ticketed for parking everywhere, even though there’s no space to park in their driveways,” said candidate Namu Ponnambalam.  “Even on the internal roads, not even the main roads, they’re being ticketed.”

Ponnambalam said that residents are still being hampered by old Scarborough bylaws, rather than City of Toronto bylaws.  Scarborough was amalgamated into Toronto in 1998.

The lack of proper parking areas are mirrored in another new development, Rougeville, near Morningside and Sheppard Avenues.

“There is no alternative to parking on the road,” said former Rougeville Community Association president Shamoon Poonawala.  “These communities are just designed to sell as many houses as possible.”

“The city should take charge and initiate discussion on this issue,” Poonawala said.

Poonawala said the recession saw more people move into their parents’ houses, and that the number of cars per house is increasing.

“Some four-bedroom, two-bathroom houses might have four cars,” he said.

Residents are being further aggravated by a new Toronto bylaw which prohibits parking more cars in their driveway than they can fit in their garage.