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Old 04-27-2017, 08:48 PM   #1
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Default Walmart in Halifax, Nova Scotia

Does anyone know if the Walmart in Halifax, Nova Scotia (Canada) alows overnight parking?

Or any other place in Halifax?

Thanks
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Old 04-27-2017, 09:06 PM   #2
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We stayed at 220 Chain Lake Dr, Halifax, NS in June 2016. Lots of big box stores nearby and lots of RVs.
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Old 04-27-2017, 09:28 PM   #3
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Great! Thanks for the info.
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Old 04-28-2017, 10:10 PM   #4
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As far as I know, it's technically still not legal to park and sleep in a vehicle anywhere in Nova Scotia unless that vehicle is in a paid licensed facility. This is equally true if the property is private, such as a Walmart property. Nova Scotia inserts itself into the relationship between the private property owner and the vehicle owner.

Now, I've seen plenty of people doing it at the Sydney Walmart, even in Class As, apparently without hassle or interference, but as far as I know, the very controversial regulations banning Wallydocking and other forms of boondocking are still in place.

Just mentioning this to reduce your chances of a possible rude surprise. I don't know how rigorously those regs have been enforced in any part of the province at any time. There was plenty of offense taken about a decade ago or so when they came into law, and most of the anecdotal reports date from around that time vs. more recently. Here's one of the better-known early responses (PDF):

https://www.escapees.com/images/pdfs/rv-report.pdf
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Old 04-28-2017, 10:22 PM   #5
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When we were in Nova Scotia in 2016, we stayed at a Walmart in Truro that had signs that no overnight parking was allowed but we went inside and asked anyway. They said that the store did not have a problem and that it was a town bylaw. They indicated that they have not had issues so we stayed overnight. In Halifax, we stopped at one Walmart that was in town and part of a mall. Mall security said no and directed us to Chain Link Dr. There were several RVs there including several European travellers as I expect that they had just arrived from a container ship. We always ask for permission....generally after doing some shopping.
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Old 04-29-2017, 01:31 PM   #6
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Thanks for the info InterBlog and Cruisefx.

Yes, of course, asking permission first is always recommended... and shopping helps. Chain Lake Drive is a little farther from downtown than I would like to stay but we can certainly make it work. It's also nice to know that the Sydney Walmart doesn't have a problem with it as we might also go to Newfoundland this summer and would overnight in the area waiting for the morning ferry.

I didn't know that Nova Scotia had bylaws against overnighting in parking lots. I know that in the neighboring province of New Brunswick where I live, campground owners did try to stop the practice about 10-15 years ago, saying that Walmart was ''stealing'' clients from them. The government decided to stay out of it, arguing that it wasn't camping, it was only parking on the road between point A and point B and that Walmart had the right to ''invite'' anyone it wanted on it's property. There was a lot of noise about it in the news for a few months then it died down and we haven't heard much about it since.
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Old 04-29-2017, 01:38 PM   #7
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It might also be helpful as a potential defense to a ticket to be able to explain why the overnight parking was necessary. The intent behind the regulations was to force RVers into parks that desperately need the revenue during a very short tourist season in a province that is characterized by chronic economic depression. But the regulation failed to account for the access pressures, which are extreme at the height of the season, to the point where nobody is getting into many of those licensed facilities - they book up months in advance. This is anticipated to be especially true this coming summer on account of the Perfect Storm of tourist attractants:

(a) widely-publicized free Parks Canada passes this year and
(b) the fact that the Canuck buck is currently in the toilet - 1.37 exchange rate as of today!!

So if it were me and I were fixin' to park in a conspicuous area, I might put in a call to a nearby licensed RV park, verify that they have no openings, and get the phone-answerer's first name. That way if I were approached on a violation, I'd have the due diligence ready and I could respond, "I tried to book in facility x but I spoke to so-and-so and they are full, so I am stuck here instead." That's a common-sense defense that an enforcing officer could easily verify.

The issue is of interest to me because I'm planning an extended trip to NS during the "shoulder season" (autumn) when many camping facilities are already closed for the year. At that time of year, staying in licensed facilities is physically impossible, but again, the regulation as I understand it offers no relief for that scenario - it failed to account for that, too.
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Old 04-29-2017, 02:00 PM   #8
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That's a great idea InterBlog.

And agreed, Canada's 150th celebrations will make it harder to find camping this summer. I was hoping to go to one of the two National Parks in my area for the long weekend in May and tried to make reservations in early April but EVERYTHING was already booked! I didn't check further down the calendar but something tells me that unless one makes reservations early, all that will be left will be private campgrounds and as we all know, those can range from fantastic to downright scary.

And as far as the Canadian dollar goes... you're welcome.
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Old 04-29-2017, 04:19 PM   #9
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... in the neighboring province of New Brunswick where I live, campground owners did try to stop the practice about 10-15 years ago, saying that Walmart was ''stealing'' clients from them. The government decided to stay out of it, arguing that it wasn't camping, it was only parking on the road between point A and point B and that Walmart had the right to ''invite'' anyone it wanted on it's property. There was a lot of noise about it in the news for a few months then it died down and we haven't heard much about it since.
Thank goodness NB had the good sense to take that approach. NS's argument about "stealing" clients kinda falls flat when the facts are considered about just how much revenue they are actually booking. From the gov't's own website, remembering that this is a province of only 900,000 year-round residents, and also remembering that with the growth of this demand, there hasn't really been a commensurate growth in corresponding campground supply:

"Nova Scotia's tourism industry had its best year in history in 2016 and its third consecutive year of growth. In all, 2.2 million visitors came to the province last year, an increase of eight per cent, about 170,000 more visitors, over 2015.

Tourism revenue for 2016 was an estimated $2.6 billion, an increase of five per cent, $125 million, from the year before and a 28 per cent, $575 million, jump from 2010."
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Old 04-29-2017, 04:40 PM   #10
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::

I didn't know that Nova Scotia had bylaws against overnighting in parking lots.

::

Pretty well everywhere in North America has a bylaw against overnighting in parking lots and public streets.

Whether they enforce it is another story.

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Old 04-29-2017, 05:13 PM   #11
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Pretty well everywhere in North America has a bylaw against overnighting in parking lots and public streets.
On private property? Documentation, please.
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Old 04-29-2017, 09:18 PM   #12
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On private property? Documentation, please.
Yes, there are local ordinances that address private property. The ordinances don't prohibit "parking" on private property. What the ordinance will prohibit is "habitation", the definition of which may range from 24 months to 24 seconds.
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Old 04-29-2017, 09:37 PM   #13
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Yes, there are local ordinances that address private property. The ordinances don't prohibit "parking" on private property. What the ordinance will prohibit is "habitation", the definition of which may range from 24 months to 24 seconds.
Documentation, please.
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Old 04-29-2017, 10:21 PM   #14
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Documentation, please.
Marin County, CA:

7.52.020 - Restrictions.
No person shall use, occupy or permit the use or occupancy of any bus, camper, car, housecar, trailer, or trailer coach for human habitation on any street, park, parkway, beach, or other public or private property except in areas zoned or designed for such purposes by the County.
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Old 04-29-2017, 11:01 PM   #15
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Marin County, CA:

7.52.020 - Restrictions.
No person shall use, occupy or permit the use or occupancy of any bus, camper, car, housecar, trailer, or trailer coach for human habitation on any street, park, parkway, beach, or other public or private property except in areas zoned or designed for such purposes by the County.
I really don't mean to give you a hard time, and I certainly could be mistaken, but it is the "Pretty well everywhere in North America" part of your claim that I do not find credible. Marin County, CA is hardly typical in this regard. It is my belief that such rules are vanishingly rare in the US. The ordinance you cite, taken at face value, would forbid one from sleeping in an RV parked in their own driveway. That is a very Marin County kind of rule. I read what you said about enforcement being another matter, but I do not believe that such ordinances even exist in significant numbers, except perhaps in coastal resort communities.
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Old 04-29-2017, 11:10 PM   #16
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I really don't mean to give you a hard time, and I certainly could be mistaken, but it is the "Pretty well everywhere in North America" part of your claim that I do not find credible. Marin County, CA is hardly typical in this regard. It is my belief that such rules are vanishingly rare in the US. The ordinance you cite, taken at face value, would forbid one from sleeping in an RV parked in their own driveway. That is a very Marin County kind of rule. I read what you said about enforcement being another matter, but I do not believe that such ordinances even exist in significant numbers, except perhaps in coastal resort communities.
Where we are in Minnesota, blue collar exurb of Minneapolis, it is not legal to live/sleep in any structure other than one with a certificate of occupancy, if it is on a private lot not setup as a campground. They don't enforce it much unless they get some complaints or come across it while doing some other inspection. We have see it enforced in our neighborhood in cases of snowbirds living the entire summer in their camper on their kids lot, though. So technically, you could not sleep in your camper in your driveway.
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Old 04-30-2017, 08:14 PM   #17
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I really don't mean to give you a hard time, and I certainly could be mistaken, but it is the "Pretty well everywhere in North America" part of your claim that I do not find credible.
My claim?

Documentation please.
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Old 04-30-2017, 08:26 PM   #18
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.

Lol


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Old 04-30-2017, 09:49 PM   #19
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My claim?

Documentation please.
touché.

My apologies.
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Old 04-30-2017, 11:55 PM   #20
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Marin County, CA is hardly typical in this regard. It is my belief that such rules are vanishingly rare in the US. The ordinance you cite, taken at face value, would forbid one from sleeping in an RV parked in their own driveway. That is a very Marin County kind of rule. I read what you said about enforcement being another matter, but I do not believe that such ordinances even exist in significant numbers, except perhaps in coastal resort communities.
IMO, the Marin County ordinance I cited is better described as ubiquitous than untypical. The inspiration for such ordinances was to preclude property owners from driving trailers, et al, on their undeveloped parcels and permanently living in them. So the ordinances aren't directed at parking, per se, but habitation and typically limits habitation to a structure that qualifies for an occupancy permit.

There's a mish-mash of constraints and exemptions for both private and public properties. Some ordinances provide a private property exemption during the period in which a permanent home is being constructed on the same property. Other ordinances have a more nuanced interpretation of what constitutes habitation and permit vehicle occupancy for a limited period, which seems to be 72 hours. Hey, in a lot of places you can't even park your own car on the street next to your house without moving it every 72 hours. In San Diego you can not park your RV on any street at night unless you are resident of the city and even then you have to acquire a permit for the night(s) it's parked there.

The increase of enforcement measures enacted against homeless persons living in their vehicle has produced litigation that queries the constitutionality of such measures where the enforcement process has a sufficiently selective fragrance to constitute unfair discrimination. It's in this crude net that RV owners are increasingly being caught up and subjected to harassment.
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