How to save money on another parking study

Armchair Mayor
By Mel Rothenburger
November 6, 2017 - 6:42am Updated: November 6, 2017 - 11:20am

KAMLOOPS —I am so confused.

On the corner of Fourth and Seymour Street, a venerable, solid old building has just been torn down for a parking lot.

For years, we’ve been told the downtown core needs 200 more parking spaces, mostly for people who work there.

Just since 2005, studies have been done on downtown parking in general, the impact a casino would have had on Lansdowne Street, the impact on downtown parking of a waterfront hotel, and the effect on City centre parking of redeveloping Lorne Street.

Then, of course, there was the infamous parkade-in-the-park fiasco, and the City Centre Plan of which parking is a key ingredient.

Parking demand, on-street parking, off-street parking, ratios of parking per square foot of building space, parking versus traffic volume — they’ve been studied to death.

But now, the City is looking at spending $100,000 on yet another downtown parking study, this one to decide what will be needed over the next 20 years.

The study will ask questions such as whether businesses want more parking.

What’s the best city-owned property downtown for a new parking garage?

Are parking rates OK?

What’s going on in other cities?

The Kamloops Central Business Improvement Association, which loves parking studies, is on side with this newest exercise.

I can save some money for my City cousins right off the bat. Want to know what other cities are doing? Google it.

Want to know where there’s public land for a new parking garage? Look at what you’re doing at 4th and Seymour.

As for whether businesses want more parking — one guess.

But here’s an even better idea. Read the parking study done by consultants a few years ago, which said, “Demand for parking will be highly influenced by new development in the area.”

Of course it will.

Does anyone know exactly what that development will be over the next 20 years? Of course not.

So, save your money.

I’m Mel Rothenburger, the Armchair Mayor.