Sharjah parking
Registration for the new free public parking service can be done online from January 19 onwards and only one registration will be allowed per family. Image Credit: Supplied

Sharjah: Sharjah Municipality announced on Sunday a free parking facility for senior citizens across the emirate. The service will come into effect from January 19.

The new initiative is based on the visions and directives of His Highness Dr Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Mohammad Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah. It aims to cater to the needs of the elderly, Sharjah City Municipality announced. The municipality further said that the elderly in Sharjah will be exempted from public parking fees and will be provided with free annual subscriptions that will allow them to park in all city public parking areas at all times. Through this initiative, the municipality aims to provide the elderly with means of comfort, considering that public parking is one of the most important services needed by anyone driving within the city.

Thabit Al Turaifi, Director General of Sharjah Municipality, said this initiative has been launched by the municipality as part of its endeavour to support the elderly and all other groups in society and to support the emirate’s vision to present itself as a model for age-friendly cities.

Ali Ahmad Abu Ghazin, Director of Public Parking Department, affirmed that the municipality will provide this service to the elderly in Sharjah in keeping with certain set parameters, such as, an applicant must be a citizen of the emirate, should be 60 years and above and it will not apply to parking in places that are designated for persons with special needs and those reserved for commercial establishments and others, unless the applicant is eligible to be a direct beneficiary of the service in that space category. Moreover, each family will be granted only one subscription for one elderly family member.

Abu Ghazeen noted that it is possible to apply for the service via the municipality’s website, starting from January 19, by accessing the site and choosing the smart and electronic services option. Copies of the Emirates ID, registration summary and the vehicle’s ownership document in the name of the beneficiary or one of his or her first-degree relatives will have to be provided at the time of registration.

In keeping with digital trends 

The municipality will begin to provide these subscriptions virtually, through its website, in line with digital trends and in an attempt to save time and energy. This initiative is one more step towards ensuring the emirate’s digital transformation.

Al Turaifi further said that an estimated 3,000 people stand to benefit from this free parking facility.

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Meanwhile, Khalid bin Falah Al Suwaidi, Assistant Director General of the Customer Service Sector at Sharjah Municipality, explained that this initiative reflects the municipality’s keenness to contribute towards preserving the emirate’s membership in the international network of age-friendly cities and comes as a part of the other initiatives it had previously launched to address the needs of this segment of society. It is also keen to present the emirate as a destination where residents and visitors can enjoy quality life and a sustainable environment, where all the elements of modern life are integrated with the highest international standards.

Sharjah City Municipality welcomes the public’s comments and inquiries about this service or any other services by calling its call centre on 993, which works around the clock to respond to inquiries.