Parking Spots: Why Are All The Goods Ones Taken?

May 23, 2024 | Beginner Driving Tips

A Different Type of Stampede

Alberta’s West Edmonton Mall holds the world record for having the largest parking lot in the world. The massive 20,000-vehicle lot is so big, that if you laid out all the parking, you could fit Disneyland twice in all the space dedicated to car storage. In spite of that, visitors still echo the same complaint: it’s impossible to find parking.


Since opening its doors in 1981, the mall has consistently drawn crowds of between 90,000 and 200,000 shoppers on a daily basis, making it Canada’s second busiest mall behind only the Eaton Centre in Toronto. A lack of available parking is an issue—especially during peak holiday shopping periods and on weekends, when even the mall’s 10,000-vehicle overflow lot reaches full capacity—but it’s not the only issue.


Calling First Dibs on Parking

A recent study conducted by the University of Calgary in 2021 found that this type of ‘parking problem’ isn’t exclusive to large shopping centers, there’s actually an overabundance of parking in Canada. According to the study, there are nearly 4 parking spots for every 1 vehicle in Canada (7 to 1 in the U.S.). The problem isn’t that there’s nowhere to park, it’s that everyone wants to go to the same places at the same time.


These peak traffic periods, as they’re known, typically coincide with office hours, popular events, or weekends, and are associated with more collisions and less parking availability. Researching and knowing when these peak times occur is crucial to easing your ‘parking anxiety’—the fear of not finding a parking spot or not being able to park when you do.


The next time you go to park, consider this: Cars spend 95% of their lifespan parked. That’s a significant amount of time spent unattended, exposed to hazards like theft and damage. Not to mention the stress that comes with filing a police report in the event of a hit-and-run collision. If you could save yourself the hassle and worry by planning ahead, wouldn’t that be worth it?



1.      PLAN AHEAD

Before you drive, research the peak times and parking options.



When parking at night, look for a space that is well-lit.



Park near other vehicles. Isolated areas can attract criminals.



Look for a spot with ample space on all sides of your vehicle.



Security cameras and personnel help to deter and report crime.

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