Smithers council is considering reducing the parking requirement for businesses in the C-1 zone.

Councillor Phil Brienesse explains,

“The C-1 zone is more or less the businesses fronting Main Street. This is applying to retail uses only and reducing the parking requirements by a measure of three.”

Brienesse, who put forward the motion at the last council meeting, proposes that the bylaw requiring shops to provide one space for every 60 square meters of floor space be reduced to one space per 180 square meters of store.

He says retail on Main Street is an important component of Smithers and council has been hearing from businesses that the current parking bylaw makes development and expansion too expensive.

“By reducing this we are helping to reduce the costs and therefore making it more attractive to keeping those spaces as retail as opposed to converting them to other types of uses.”

Council will debate the motion at the May 13th meeting.