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The City of Hamilton wants to make viewing the waterfalls enjoyable for all

HAMILTON, ON - The City of Hamilton wants to make sure that viewing the Webster and Tew waterfalls and the Dundas Peak, is enjoyed by all this holiday weekend. This includes local residents who share the streets with visitors, from near and far, in the Dundas and Greensville communities.

As such, there will be a special parking enforcement area that begins tomorrow, Friday, April 19, 2019 until Friday, November 15, 2019. There will be new City of Hamilton parking signs at entry points to the area to let people know that parking violations will result in a significantly higher penalty in this area.

The special parking enforcement area, with a penalty of $250 is a pilot program launched by the City. The increased penalty is a bold attempt by the City to draw attention to the centralized parking area at Christie Lake Conservation Area with shuttle service.

“We want everyone, local residents and tourists alike, to enjoy the bountiful nature of our waterfalls. But we want them to do this by conveniently parking at HCA’s ample parking lot and taking the shuttle. This is the best way to enjoy without causing inconvenience, and more importantly, safety issues for others. The shuttle is clean, convenient and readily available.” -  Kim Coombs, Manager of Planning and Economic Development

This allows for everyone to enjoy the waterfalls without causing traffic and throughway concerns, especially for emergency vehicles. Enforcement and ticketing will be carried out by Parking Control Officers on residential streets.

Keeping the nearby streets clear for first responders and local traffic is a mounting concern over the past years. In order to promote the use of the nearby shuttle and appropriate parking lot, a new penalty is in place to ensure everyone is aware of where to park and how to get to the waterfalls, without blocking streets or causing unnecessary congestion.

HCA shuttle service

Visitors can park at Christie Lake, enjoying the area and then hop on the Hamilton Conservation Authority (HCA) shuttle bus that takes them to the falls. Once arrived, there are numerous safe viewing areas for photos and enjoyment by all.

The HCA shuttle service begins Friday, April 19, 2019 (Good Friday) until Monday, April 22, 2019 (Easter Monday). The regular operations of the shuttle will continue on weekends and holiday Mondays until Sunday October 27, 2019. 

This weekend, the first shuttle bus will leave Christie Lake at 9:30 a.m. to travel to Spencer Gorge. Shuttle service returning to Christie Lake ends at 6:30 pm. This return time is extended to 7:30 pm in June, July and August given the high season.  There is no on-site parking available at Spencer Gorge during shuttle operations, with the exception of limited accessible parking at Webster Falls.

The cost for the shuttle is included in the regular area entry fee to Christie Lake Conservation Area which is $10 per car for parking and $5 per person. HCA pass holders, using the shuttle from Christie Lake, will receive admission to the shuttle and Spencer Gorge for the driver and passengers of their vehicle, to a maximum of six persons.

For more information about the shuttle, visit: HCA shuttle service

“This is not about penalizing visitors. It’s about encouraging compliance. I don’t want anyone getting a ticket. We want to make sure everyone enjoys the falls. The best way to do this is to park in the centralized parking spot and take advantage of the shuttle. That works best for our visitors, and the neighbours, in the areas.”  - Councillor Arlene VanderBeek, Ward 13

Some tips for visiting the Hamilton waterfalls

  • Remain on paths, exercising caution by staying well back from slopes and edges
  • Utilize the safe, viewing areas for photos
  • Keep children and pets close by and do not climb or go around fencing
  • Respect the neighbours by staying off private property
  • Stay on designated trails and obey closure signs as there are many rare plants that can be easily damaged or destroyed awaterfalls are located in environmentally-sensitive areas
  • Do not cross active Canadian National rail tracks to access waterfall areas;  crossing CN rail tracks is prohibited and illegal
  • Park in designated parking areas only