Barclay hotel: A confusing sign with a twist

Toronto motorists who park in spots next to a sign that states “No parking” are getting tickets – the letters under the “no parking” at the bottom of the sign spell out “Barclay” after…

Barclay hotel: A confusing sign with a twist

Toronto motorists who park in spots next to a sign that states “No parking” are getting tickets – the letters under the “no parking” at the bottom of the sign spell out “Barclay” after the Bermuda hotel chain.

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption The Barclay hotel chain’s logo on the side of the sign.

What is happening here is not exactly clear – with multiple properties nearby, sometimes under different name brands, there is a range of possible explanations – for example, the sign is made of reflective material, causing the letters to be visible to drivers as they get ready to pull in, which attracts more traffic and the apron of the sign gets crowded.

So, as the Guardian puts it, “this is an odd way to lose space”.

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption This chart from Verde software shows how often the Barclay sign is ticketed, and the breakdown by several businesses, ranging from Ford Canada to Air Canada

Mr Blakebotton said Toronto Motor Club, which runs the rental of cars on the street, had been fined several times for parking in the spot.

“Our policy is to block off the bad spots to prevent other drivers from parking there. It’s a safety issue,” he said.

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption This chart from Verde software shows how often the Barclay sign is ticketed, and the breakdown by several businesses, ranging from Ford Canada to Air Canada

He added that a five-year-old boy who was playing near the spot was allegedly badly injured by a car this week, possibly because someone parked in this spot, making it hard for the boy to walk through it.

The Barclay’s website and company spokesperson told the Guardian that the spot was “not technically in an illegal zone”, and that the hotel “is not to blame” for the “misunderstanding”.

However, Verde software on the Toronto Globe and Mail shows that the spot was ticketed 49 times over a six-month period.

Image copyright PA Image caption Clarkson said some customers had been ticketed twice for the same spot, even though they had not broken the parking code

Among the other businesses in the area that have been ticketed are: BlackBerry Canada, Air Canada, Rideau Transit Group, Telus, the University of Toronto, the city’s Ministry of Transportation, and WestJet.

The original place is black, but there are signs on poles underneath and on the road that reads:

In fact, the sign was painted onto the apron, and not on the street.

“There is an art to it and it’s kind of like playing touch football,” Mr Blakebotton said.

However, the response to the Barclay’s site says that the “Barclay” email address is “owned and operated by the hotel” and the parking claim is “BTRM LIMITED”.

It also includes a lengthy disclaimer to ensure readers they are not paying for the Barclay’s branding.

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption More parking signs have been painted over with black paint, leaving the confusing message intact.

“We are a bergtox brand used as a messaging and positioning tool.”

A spokeswoman for Barclay Brands said in a statement that “this campaign in no way implies we are responsible for or encourage property owners, bus companies or other companies to do the same”.

She added that her company had “open dialogue with drivers of the new sign” as “appropriate, in line with client needs and our Brand Trusting Workshops”.

After this article was published, there were new posts on the Barclay’s website indicating that the Hilton hotel is also using the signs in Toronto, but did not say if they were the same.

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