Free storefront parking down to 15 minutes at Whistler Marketplace 

Drivers now need to register plates if they wish to park for longer than 15 minutes

click to enlarge PHOTO BY CLARE OGILVIE - TIME LIMITS: Previously, drivers were able to park for 30 minutes in the Marketplace storefront stalls without having to pay or register their plates. The time limit dropped down to 15 minutes in January.
  • Photo by Clare Ogilvie
  • TIME LIMITS: Previously, drivers were able to park for 30 minutes in the Marketplace storefront stalls without having to pay or register their plates. The time limit dropped down to 15 minutes in January.

Over a year and a half after pay parking was first introduced in Whistler’s Marketplace, another change to parking-lot protocol has been made.

Now, drivers in Marketplace are no longer able to park for 30 minutes for free, without registering their license plate, in the storefront stalls. Last month, fastPark dropped the time limit in the free storefront parking stalls to 15 minutes.

The remainder of the lot’s parking spots still allow drivers one hour of free parking, but require each driver to register their license plate. Drivers are also required to pay a fee if they wish to park for additional hours.

"Over the Christmas holiday season we had a 44% increase in traffic at the Marketplace compared to 2017-2018. The increase of traffic caused traffic jams and delays for customers trying to find parking, particularly in the (storefront) rows,” explained fastPark in an emailed statement.

“Vehicles were driving around in circles waiting for a 30 minute stall. We wish to reduce idling vehicles and traffic. The (storefront) area is more of a drop off and loading area. Our studies show that 80% of the vehicles stay less than 15 minutes in this area.”

The company is asking customers to use the main parking area for longer term visits. According to fastPark, over 80 per cent of Marketplace vehicle traffic uses the free parking options.

“Long term rates were increased slightly to help reduce demand. Economical long term parking is available in the Day Lots,” the statement continued. The maximum purchase is listed online as $8.50 for three hours of parking.

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