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FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

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About Winnipeg Parking Authority

What is the Winnipeg Parking Authority supposed to do?

The WPA's mandate is to provide superior parking and associated services to the citizens of Winnipeg in pursuit of the Public Good, and to encourage others to do the same. WPA is responsible for the On Street paystation system, Off Street city parking lots and garages, and parking enforcement citywide.

What is the WPA hoping to achieve through its operations?

Better quality parking operations on City properties, better quality parking operations in the city generally, more access to public parking in the downtown and throughout the City, business and customer friendly parking regulations, and a "one stop shop" for parking management issues in Winnipeg.

Where is the Parking Authority located? What are the hours? How do I contact the Parking Authority?

The Winnipeg Parking Authority is located in The Parking Store at 495 Portage Avenue in Winnipeg.

The Parking Store is open Monday to Friday from 8:30am to 6:00pm. We are also open Saturday from 10:00am to 5:00pm. Closed Saturday on long weekends.

You can reach us by phoning 311. You can also or fax us at 204-986-5155

Our mailing address is:

The Parking Store
495 Portage Avenue
Winnipeg MB
R3B 2E4

How many parking tickets are issued each day?

About 350 on a regular business day, mostly for timed parking or No Parking/No Stopping type violations.

Isn't this too many?

In Winnipeg, the 350 people who receive parking tickets represent 1% of total daily parkers.

In all parts of the world, parking tickets have been proven to be the most effective way to maintain the integrity of parking regulations, regulations which, in Winnipeg, allow 35,000 people to park hassle-free each day.

Winnipeg actually issues the second lowest volume of tickets per capita of major Canadian cities.

Of the Canadian cities we surveyed in 2008, only Edmonton issued fewer tickets for its population size than Winnipeg.

Here's how Winnipeg compares to some other cities: Toronto: .93 tickets per capita; Vancouver: .67 tickets per capita; Saskatoon: .60 tickets per capita; Victoria: .58 tickets per capita; and, Winnipeg: .21 tickets per capita.

Isn't parking just about money?

No. Parking fees are a cost recovery on the investment already made. The WPA self generates its own development funding, so every dollar paid in parking fees is returned to customers in the form of better parking facilities and services in support of policy goals. Any funds over and above those needed for operations are retained for new facility construction and renewal.

Why does the Winnipeg Parking Authority have the right to issue parking tickets?

WPA personnel are designated Special Constables.

Winnipeg City Council and the Province of Manitoba have provided us with the same authority as the Winnipeg Police Service for issuance of offence notices (tickets) and summons pertaining to parking and non-moving violations.

Are these actual tickets, like you get from the Police?

Yes. Our parking compliance officers have the same authority as the Winnipeg Police Service in issuing offence notices (tickets) and summons pertaining to parking and non-moving violations.

Does the Parking Authority pay taxes?

Yes. The WPA is set up to run as a business. We pay the City municipal taxes, development fees, as well as levies on our activities and on city properties. We also pay a dividend to the City for use of On and Off Street parking assets ($3 million in 2009).

Do City employees get free parking?

No. City employees pay the same rate for parking as everyone else.

Who are the Parking Compliance Officers?

The Winnipeg Parking Authority contracts with a local private management firm to provide staffing for our parking compliance program.

This is the case in most cities in North America.

Prior to being designated Special Constables, all compliance officers are required to undergo an extensive training program to ensure they are familiar with the relevant by-laws and WPA policies and procedures.

What do I do if a parking compliance person is helpful or unhelpful?

Let us know about your experience by . You may also write to us at 495 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg, MB R3B 2E4.

Who else can issue parking tickets?

In specific cases affecting their services and property interests, City by-law tickets can be issued by other agencies including: Winnipeg Transit, CN Police, Winnipeg Park Police, CP Police, Public Works Department, Seven Oaks Hospital, and Grace Hospital.

Parking tickets issued by these groups have the same remedies and force of law as tickets issued by the WPA directly.

Who looks after stolen vehicles or items stolen from my vehicle?

The Winnipeg Police Service. The non-emergency number is 204-986-6222. If you are in immediate danger, call 911.

Who looks after bicycle parking?

The WPA, in concert with the City of Winnipeg Active Transportation Program, offers Bike Corrals, Bike Rings, and Seasonal Bike Pads for the benefit of Winnipeg cyclists.

More information on Bicycle Parking.

As with vehicle parking, private property owners will offer differing levels of service dependent on their determination of their customers' needs.

Who looks after abandoned vehicles or RVs/trucks/trailers parked on my street?

The WPA investigates reports of abandoned vehicles and oversized vehicles parked illegally.

Many people do not realize that it is illegal to park a boat trailer, RV, utility trailer, truck, or any vehicle with more than four tires (this includes buses and semi tractors) on a street for more than 1 hour.

If you need to park a vehicle/trailer, etc. on the street for over one hour please contact the Winnipeg Parking Authority by calling 311 to request a short term extension to the by-law.

If I have a question about a Special Event or a film shoot, who do I call?

Phone 311, or , explain your interest, and staff will assist you in finding the appropriate individual.

Who is in charge of Special Events?

Film and Special Events Office at the City of Winnipeg.

Pre-Purchase Parking

Where do I apply for an annual residential parking permit?

For information on what is required to obtain a residential parking permit and/or if you qualify, call The Parking Store at 311, email us at or visit us at 495 Portage Avenue.

More information on Residential Permits.

Hours & Location

Why do I need a residential permit for my area?

Residential permits are established in residential areas where there is a requirement for time restricted parking due to vehicle volume that displaces residents from their residential streets.

A residential permit allows the resident to park their registered vehicle with exemption from the posted time restrictions on their street. In most cases, this does not allow residential permits to be used at metered parking.

Residential parking permit holders can only park in their specific residential zone and are required to obey all traffic by-laws, including all annual snow route bans, residential parking bans, and public works street works signs for spring and fall street cleaning.

I live on residential street with time restrictions. How do I accommodate parking for guests?

The WPA will issue a temporary residential permit for visitors, to a maximum of 3 temporary permits issued per year. The term "visitor" refers to an out of town visitor who stays for an extended period of time (overnight, a weekend, a week or so, but no more than three weeks).

Visitor permits are available to addresses that already have a valid Residential Permit with no fee for the visitor permit but is subject to approval. To request a visitor's permit, visit The Parking Store at 495 Portage Avenue.

The visitor's valid registration is required to process the permit.

How do I cancel my Residential Permit?

Please return it in person or by mail to 495 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg, MB R3B 2E4. There is a drop box available for drop off after hours.

What if my permit has been stolen?

If your permit has been stolen, you can report the theft to Winnipeg Police and WPA will replace the permit at no cost when provided with a police report number.

If I have a problem with parking on my street who can I call? Why do I have to make my parking infraction report through 311?

Call 311 for assistance.

Parking enforcement officers are out 24 hours a day both patrolling and responding to complaint calls. Having all calls made through 311 allows time for dispatch to prioritize these calls and respond to urgent situations. Having all complaints made through one number also allows for better tracking of these concerns.

Where do I get a monthly permit for a Parking Authority parking lot or parkade?

For information on availability, call The Parking Store at 311, or visit us at 495 Portage Avenue.

The Parking Store is open Monday to Friday from 8:30am to 6:00pm. We are also open Saturday from 10:00am to 5:00pm. We are closed long weekends.

More information on Parkades and Lots.

I want to cancel my monthly parking. What is the cancellation policy for Parkades and Lots?

If you no longer wish to park in a WPA parkade or lot, bring the following to the Parking Store at 495 Portage Avenue:

  • written notice in the form of a completed cancellation form (required 30 days before the first of the month of effective cancellation date)
  • your permit or transponder (required on or before the 5th of the effective cancellation month, after 30 days notice)

Cancellation will be effective on the 1st day of the month following 30 days written notice (i.e. completed cancellation form).

For example, if you would like to cancel for March 1st, 2013, a cancellation form must be at the Parking Store prior to February 1st, 2013 and permit/transponder must be returned on or before March 5th, 2013.

NOTE: Transponder's returned after 5 days from your effective cancellation date are considered missing and your permit deposit will be forfeited.

What facilities does the Parking Authority operate?

Facilities for public use are:

  • Millennium Library
  • Paulin, Stradbrook and Osborne, Waterfront, and Old St. Boniface lots

To find a parkade/lot near you, or for more information on individual parkades/lots, visit the Find Parking section of our website.

How do I know it's a WPA lot?

Watch for our Civic "P" brand.

What if I find a lot that looks like it needs maintenance?

Phone 311. You can also , fax us at 204-986-5155, or use the email form in the Contact Us section of our website.

Does the WPA buy and sell parking lots?

No, WPA does not hold title to its lots. This is managed through the City of Winnipeg Planning Property and Development, Real Estate Division

When should I use an off street parking lot?

Whenever you plan to stay - or may be required to stay - at your destination longer than 30 minutes.

How big is a parking stall inside a lot or structure?

The by-law calls for 8.5 ft. X 21 ft.

Pay for Parking As You Go

How do paystations work?

When you approach the machine, insert your credit card or coin and the machine will wake up.

Then push the silver buttons to the right to purchase maximum time or increments of time as instructed. Push the green button to print a receipt and leave the receipt on your dash.

There is a video on how paystations work in the videos section of our website.

What if I don't know how to use a paystation?

The best idea is to learn how to use a paystation before you need to use it.

There is a video on how paystations work in the videos section of our website.

You can also ask a parking enforcement officer or a Downtown Watch officer, both have been trained and are ready to provide a short instruction.

What do I do if I find a paystation that is not working?

Call 311 and report the paystation number.

This number is on the front of the machine just above the green "Print Ticket" button.

Do not confuse this with the location number (large white number on side and back of machine).

If you are parking at a surface parking lot or on the street, and you encounter a machine that is not working, try to locate a nearby machine or use an alternate payment method (pre-purchased coupons or park by phone).

There is more information in the videos section of our website.

If there are no other machines conveniently located (i.e. on the same block), then the WPA will not enforce that location until maintenance is completed.

If you receive a parking ticket because of a paystation that is not working, do not worry, these machines communicate wirelessly with our office and the WPA can ensure that your ticket is not issued unfairly.

Just bring your ticket in to the Parking Store at 495 Portage Avenue or fill out our form in the Contest a Ticket section of our website.

Please note that on any given day, there are between 5 and 30 machines that require maintenance as they are out of paper or the coin vault needs emptied.

The normal turnaround time on maintenance is less than half a day.

Do I take the receipt with me?

No. Leave it face side up on the dash so we can see your times.

Please note that if we cannot see your receipt through your windshield, it is considered a parking violation and you may get a ticket.

More information on displaying your receipt and other Meter Payment Methods information.

While displaying my disabled permit, am I required to pay for parking?

Yes. All vehicles parked in a designated paid parking spot must make payment using one of the available payment options.

Meter payment methods include purchasing a paystation receipt, using PayByPhone, displaying a Scratch Meter Permit or the proper Meter Permit.

Click here for more information regarding parking with a disability permit.

How many paystation stalls are there?

Approximately 3,700.

How far do I have to walk to find a paystation?

About 4 car lengths. We have placed the machines close together for greater convenience.

On average, there are two paystations per block.

Shorter blocks have one, longer blocks have three or more.

Who decides where parking paystations go, what they cost, and how much time they offer?

Times terms and conditions are established by the WPA in consultation with its Board of Advisors and local community BIZ groups and interests. Parking rates are approved by Council.

Does the WPA still use parking meters?

No. Winnipeg utilizes centralized paystation technology.

Pay as you go On Street parking is located in the downtown; fees are $1-$2 per hour to a 2 hour maximum.

On the streets around the St. Boniface Hospital and Health Sciences Centre, most stalls are currently 4 hour zones at $2 per hour.

There are still meters left in Winnipeg, but are owned either by the province or a private enterprise.

When should I use an on street parking space?

For short stay parking only. For longer stay parking, please use off street parkades or lots.

Why can't on street parking offer more time or less time?

As a result of input from our stakeholders, the majority of paystations in the City have been converted to 2 hours.

Some paystations at St. Boniface Hospital and the Health Sciences Centre campus allow 4 hours in recognition of the additional time that is often required when visiting these facilities.

What kind of payment is taken for casual parking at parkades and lots?

All of our lots have paystations (same as on street parking) take coin, credit card (Visa, American Express, Master Card),and Verrus (pay by phone).

The Millennium Parkade also has paystations (a little different than the on street paystations) that accept the same payment as lots. In addition to this, but at the booth only, we accept debit cards. The Millennium Library Parkade booth is open 24 hours.

Tickets - Pay or Contest

I've received a parking ticket but I am not sure what I did wrong. How can I find out?

We have information on parking violations in top menu of our website. This information is also available in the Site Map section of our website.

Manitoba Public Insurance publishes basic information on illegal parking in the Manitoba Driver Handbook.

If you still have questions, contact the Winnipeg Parking Authority. We would be happy to explain.

Parking rules and regulations are outlined in Provincial Legislation and City of Winnipeg By-Laws:

How do I pay a ticket?

You may pay your ticket online, by phone, in person or by drop box. You can find more information on these methods in the Pay a Ticket section of our website.

Does the Parking Authority arrange payment plans for outstanding tickets?

No. To make payment on outstanding parking tickets you may pay your ticket online, by phone, in person or by drop box. You can find more information on these methods in the Pay a Ticket section of our website.

If I have received a parking ticket in error, what do I do?

If there is an error on your ticket, your first step is to ask for a Request for Review (RFR).

Come into the Parking Store at 495 Portage Avenue or fill out the RFR on our website.

The RFR applies to any administrative errors that may have been made in the issuance of the ticket. There is no fee for this service.

You may use our immediately. If you come in person to the Parking Store, the best time to do so is the next business day after you received the ticket because:

  • digital pictures related to your ticket will be available
  • You still have the option to contest the ticket at Provincial Court (your ticket becomes a default conviction after 15 days).

Visit the Contest a Ticket section of our website for more information on how to appear at Provincial Court.

If I disagree with a parking ticket, what can I do about it?

Visit the Appear at Provincial Court section of our website for more information on how to appear at Provincial Court.

I parked the vehicle. Why do I need the registered owner's permission to take the ticket to court?

Under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA), the Province limits the sharing of personal information, including information around vehicle registration and parking offences, without a person's permission. As the Summary Convictions Act makes the registered owner of a vehicle responsible for any parking offences, the courts require the written authorization of the registered owner in order to allow someone else to attend to the court for a parking ticket.

If I disagree with a City by-law that is enforced by a parking ticket, what should I do?

Contact your Councillor and request a change to the By-Law.

The needs of the City change from year to year and policy direction can occur at Council level.

To find out the name of your City Council member, go to the City of Winnipeg's Citizen's Information service.

From there, you can get your Council member's contact information from the Current Council Members page on the City of Winnipeg website.

What if I refuse or forget to pay?

If you do not pay within 15 days of the ticket being issued, you will miss out on the early payment option outlined in the City of Winnipeg Voluntary Payment of Fines By-Law No. 789/74, and your ticket becomes a default conviction (no further avenues of appeal are available).

If you do not pay within 30 days, the following action will be taken in accordance with the Summary Convictions Act:

  • Denial of any further services
  • Administration fees assessed
  • Towing of your vehicle from City property
  • Collection Agency and credit action
  • Denial of driver's license and registration
What if I get towed?

If you think your vehicle has been towed, call 311.

We will know if your vehicle was removed by our staff, and we may be able to help locate your vehicle if it was removed by others.

The WPA employs towing ONLY in the case where the removal of the vehicle is urgent due to emergency, traffic flow, blocking of required space, or some other urgent situation.

The WPA will also tow if a vehicle has an outstanding parking ticket which has not been paid over 30 days after the ticket was issued.

Towing is performed by a local towing company on contract to the City, and all fees associated with the tow are payable to reimburse the contractor, as is standard in most cities.

If you incurred costs for an incorrectly towed vehicle you may call 311 to request a tow refund claim, however only a not guilty verdict may result in tow fees being reimbursed.

Last update: February 26, 2015

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