EDITORIAL – SOS, lost in RIH parkade, please send a search party

Is there anything the slightest bit intuitive about this?

Is there anything the slightest bit intuitive about this?

An Armchair Mayor editorial by Mel Rothenburger.

COMPLAINING ABOUT parking at Royal Inland Hospital is a little like hitting someone when they’re already down, like flogging a dead horse, dwelling upon the obvious, trying to turn back the tide, and all that.

But, I can’t help myself. It is a wonder of planning and engineering. People are complaining about there not being enough overheight parking stalls in the new Clinical Services Building parkade but it’s such an improvement over the old situation I have nothing but kind things to say about it in that regard.

There is, of course, the fee-payment system, which has become such a subject of public derision that the Interior Health PR department surely has several weeks of overtime coming for the extra hours it put in trying to spin it into something positive (some things just aren’t possible).

Other issues remain. I had occasion to make use of the parkade this week and noticed that the elevators now have tiny little notes of explanation glued beside each button. This is not exactly professional looking, but anything is an improvement, since when the parkade opened there were people getting lost for days in there trying to figure out how to get to where they wanted to go. It is such a counter-intuitively designed building that the fate of some who have entered is still unlearned — the Kingston Trio should write a song about it.

Anyway, the trip in was a lot easier than the trip out. I had paid my money in advance, as we now must, and all I had to do was find my vehicle and depart. Easier said than done.

Having committed to memory my parking stall number, I headed down the stairs to the P1 parking level, where one assumes stall number 108 would be located.

That is, if one thinks logically. Committees tasked with designing numbering systems for hospital parkades don’t think that way. What they do is, brainstorm ways to make parking as confusing as possible.

So, of course, stalls numbered 259 to 350 must go on parking level P4. If your stall number is 164, why, that will be found on P3. It’s somewhat like a new version of the Rubik’s cube — you aren’t supposed to be able to figure it out except by pure, blind luck.

What if they were to number P4 stalls starting with — oh, let’s see, the numeral 4, and P3 stalls starting with 3 (such as 300 and so on), and on like that.

That would actually be intuitive and, plainly, no fun at all at the committee level. As it happened, my visit was the same day as official approval of a new multi-million-dollar patient-care tower was being announced, so in the big picture, parking-stall numbers might seem insignificant, but empires have crumbled on lesser follies. One shudders to imagine what they’ll come up with for parking at the new tower.

As for stall 108, I eventually found it on parking level P2, by which time I was ready for lunch and a tall glass of Scotch, and I don’t even drink Scotch.

About Mel Rothenburger (5564 Articles) is a forum about Kamloops and the world. It has more than one million views. Mel Rothenburger is the former Editor of The Daily News in Kamloops, B.C. (retiring in 2012), and past mayor of Kamloops (1999-2005). At he is the publisher, editor, news editor, city editor, reporter, webmaster, and just about anything else you can think of. He is grateful for the contributions of several local columnists. This blog doesn't require a subscription but gratefully accepts donations to help defray costs.

5 Comments on EDITORIAL – SOS, lost in RIH parkade, please send a search party

  1. Outright stealing; the parkade is quite a distance when you have somebody that is sick, ailing, coming to the main building and then having to put the added pressure of trying to decipher how much time to pay for parking…….why, why, why….and no, I’m not beating a dead horse……many seniors are on limited income nor are some quite as agile as they were before.

  2. Mike Everatt // February 9, 2017 at 11:48 AM // Reply

    Well, I got to my appointment early after dropping off my partner at work. Expecting the usual delay, plus the fact that I was early, I (foolishly) pre-paid for four hours. As luck would have it, the weather meant short lineups, and my appointment got bumped ahead — resulting in me being done in just over one hour!! OK, I get that there is no “partial hour” payment option, but that still leaves two full hours of parking that I paid for, and didn’t use. Even worse, some other shmuck will now use my empty spot and pay as well — double, maybe even triple dipping for Impark! No wonder they wanted to do away with post-payment — they make way more money this way!

    As for Mel, well, you gotta remember your license plate anyway, so its not too much more to remember the “P” number on the door when you head out to the elevator. Take a photo if you have to, with your ever present smartphone, and never be lost in the parkade again!

  3. Betty Arkinstall // February 9, 2017 at 11:26 AM // Reply

    This is the very first thing I said the first time I visited the new arcade. Their number system makes no sense at all. Also the hospital knows there is an issue with the overheight vehicles yet they ignored it.
    Their old pay system without change machines is just stealing in my opinion. My last beef is the staff parking in the new parkade. I was there last week at 10:30 am and had to circle the parkade 3 times and got a spot on my forth try.

  4. Vivian Grant // February 9, 2017 at 9:27 AM // Reply

    Too funny as I sit in RIH waiting for my hubby! Hopefully I will be able to find my car!!

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