On most winter days, Kelly Bray is on the phone with the borough government trying to figure out which side of the street she can park on before opening the doors at 7 a.m. at the CPE Riverview Daycare in Verdun.

Recently, however, the borough gave her something else to think about — vignette parking zones on Riverview Street.

“We were not aware of that,” said Bray, who is a daycare educator. “We didn’t receive anything as business people here. And I got a ticket the first day.”

Vignette parking is a concept that was virtually unheard of in Verdun before. Although commonplace in the Plateau, it is new in Verdun and some residents are not happy about it.

“In the Old Port? I can understand it,” said Stephanie Carle, who lives on the street. “But here? It’s kind of useless.”

In August, some residents said they received a letter from the city that they said indicated the changes were coming, and to email the borough if they weren’t in favour of them.

But many employees working at the school and daycare in the area say they were caught completely off guard by the changes. What’s more, despite the fact these changes affect them, unlike residents, they aren’t eligible to purchase the vignettes because they don’t reside there.

“I would pay $50, $100 a year for permit parking, I’m okay with that,” Bray said. “I just don’t want to drive around for 20 minutes in the morning and see parents lined up outside with their children in the cold because I can’t find parking.”

City officials point out that the borough introduced the vignette concept in order to give residents a zone to park in, adding that this was done with consultation.

But some residents told CTV News they received a letter in the mail in August explaining that vignettes were being introduced, and that they could write the borough an email saying they didn’t want them.

Some residents in the area, like Jennifer Simoneau, told CTV they supported the vignette idea, pointing to the no-parking zones caused by the school’s drop-off and pickup areas.

A petition is now circulating among teachers in an effort to get the borough to change its mind.

“Even before the vignettes we had problems parking,” said Veronica Amar, a French teacher at the school.

“Especially in the winter, it was horrible."