The parking game is about to change in Montreal starting next Monday.
Yes, it will be April first but, no, this is not an elaborate April Fool's Day prank by the City of Montreal.
It is, however, the new street parking restrictions that will go into effect across the city.
TL;DR April 1st marks the start of the new parking restrictions in the city. Get ready to move your car for the street sweeper every week - and be vigilant, as fines are expected to up this year.
If you don't drive in Montreal, consider yourself lucky that you're free from the stresses of parking and re-parking throughout the week.
The new parking restrictions go into effect on April 1st and stay in effect until December 1st (when we will once again welcome that duplicitous dame, la neige).
Just as we shuffled our cars from parking spot to parking spot all winter long to allow the menacing plows to smash through the streets, so will we shuffle for the street cleaner.
And if you've been outside at all this week, you know damn well that them streets need a sweepin'!!!
I'm at a point where I have to look away from some stretches of sidewalk because there is so much trash it reminds me far too vividly of what trash we humans are when it comes to littering.
I don't know if the city needs more trash cans or what, but with the thaw hitting hard this week, the litter everywhere has started to poke through, like man-made crocus' that manage to make spring uglier.
So, I can say as someone who no longer owns a car or drives in the city, I'm pretty excited about the street sweepers impending arrival.
But if you do drive, you may feel differently, considering your favourite game Musical Parking Spots is about to start, and it won't end for another 8 months. Joy!
Of course, every street is different, so be sure to carefully read the signs on your street or wherever you are leaving your char starting Monday.
The downside of the truly insane amount of free street parking in Montreal is the nearly impossible to read parking signs. (Just kidding, they're not that bad once you figure them out. If you need help, consider this app that tries to make the whole thing easier.)
Essentially what you need to look for is that one- or two-hour window that the street cleaner will pass by your street. It will usually be the same day every week, and usually, the opposite side of the street is another day, so if you're lucky, the swap is as simple as moving across the road.
But be vigilant! Parking ticket fines are expected to rise this summer. If you know you're going to be parking a lot on the street outside your work or apartment, you can always apply for a parking permit that will give you priority over other drivers.
To learn more, head to the city's site here, and happy street parking MTL!