free parking toronto

This is how you can park for free on major streets in Toronto

Trying to find parking on a major downtown Toronto street is often nearly impossible, especially when you're just quickly stopping to pick something up and don't want to pay hefty street or parking lot prices.

Fortunately, some of you may have noticed that the challenge of finding somewhere to leave your car while running into a store or restaurant in Toronto has been made a little easier thanks to the 10-minute free parking signs that have popped up all over the city. 

The signs, which have been spotted by residents who've been pleasantly surprised (and a little confused) to find such accomodating rules on some of the city's busiest streets, were put up this summer as a part of the CurbTO program, according to Eric Holmes, a senior communications coordinator for the city. 

Holmes said the spots in which these signs can be found are called Temporary Parking Pickup Zones, and they were put up "to help accommodate increased demand for businesses that provide pick up and delivery options" starting in April. 

The City of Toronto first introduced the CurbTO program in the spring to address crowding on busy streets and outside businesses amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The city identified a number of "hot spots" that were in need of more space, and each one was deemed either a Curb Lane Pedestrian Zone (areas outside businesses that were granted extra space so customers could line up to ensure physical distancing) or a Parking Pick-Up Zone. 

According to the city's database, there are now a total of 92 Parking Pick-Up Zones, aka free 10-minute parking spaces, scattered throughout the city. 

Lead photo by

Diane Walton


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