Parking changes at Royal Inland Hospital parkade due to design problems | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Parking changes at Royal Inland Hospital parkade due to design problems

A parking meter in the new Royal Inland Hospital parkade.
December 05, 2016 - 4:30 PM

KAMLOOPS - Less than six months after it was first opened, the parking system at Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops hospital has been changed from a gated exit where a person pays, to a prepay system. 

Drivers can now pay for parking in advance and with a mobile app.

The reasoning for the change was due to design issues and vehicle backups created by the original system, according to Interior Health Authority parking manager Andrew Pattison.

“Overall it wasn’t the fit we were hoping for, that became abundantly clear,“ he says. “Initially there were two exit gates and there were a lot of larger vehicles that had trouble navigating.”

Because of the turning radius large vehicles have, it was decided one of the two gates would be closed and everyone would be guided through the other, but that caused significant delays. The gate system also broke a few times, causing more problems and lost revenue.

The wide array of problems led to the choice to change systems. Pattison says feedback from users to staff on the ground also influenced the decision to go back to a prepay system with no gates, similar to what had existed prior to the new parkade.

For people concerned about prepaying for parking without knowing how long they’ll be at the hospital, Pattison says there are a couple ways around it. For people with a smart phone they can use that and as their meter gets close to running out a warning will appear, along with the option to add more time. If someone does go over, but has a legitimate reason, Pattison says talk to staff.

“They can express that concern to their care provider,” he says. “We can make an arrangement, if they have a good reason.”

That all be treated by on a case by case basis. People can either take their issues to Impark, which run the frontline operations, or the Interior Health Authority that manages the system.

Pattison says because the parkade is relatively new the costs of the change are covered by the contractor and won’t cost taxpayers anything additional.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Brendan Kergin or call 250-819-6089 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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