Ms. Anne Thorpe- Growing Pains & Parking Problems

Tried to get a parking spot in Revelstoke lately?

The latest boom in the ‘Stoke is good for business but since this column is written by a manic malcontent we’ll consider an issue on the flip side.

It’s 10am. in the city. For a number of old timers and long term residents that means coffee time, a ritual that cannot be tampered with, but where to go? We certainly don’t have a shortage of java joints but the decision is no longer based only on the quality of the bean. More and more the main issue is finding a parking spot.

If you head downtown you will, more frequently, find no open spots. MacKenzie is often full. 1st. St. and 2nd. spots are taken by staff from the shops and the municipal lot on 1st. E. is peppered with Volkswagen busses, old jeeps and Subarus with ski racks.

This means more and more local punters are heading to the highway where bigger lots rule the day. Are we going out to the highway when we’re trying to get visitors in from #1 ? 

Tourists are filling our parking spots. That’s one of the upsides of economic growth but it creates one of the many paradoxes of falling on good times. Residents who supply a steady, year round cash flow to our cuppa dens are being pushed away from their traditional caffeine cathedrals by one shot transients. It’s good and bad at the same time…makes about as much sense as a circular firing squad.

Yogi Berra once said, “Nobody goes there anymore, it’s too crowded”.

The conundrum continues.

We keep saying the downtown core should continue to be the main trading area. We fight elections over it. 

Breaking News…We need more parking spots. So, build a three floor parking garage where the municipal lot sits on 1st. E.  How about more enforcement? It’s needed desperately. Maybe go back to angle parking on MacKenzie. Nah, too dangerous when backing out.

Regardless, the solution takes money meaning taxes and we fight tax hikes like a badger under a hat.

A recent article in this fine journal reports on the battle between owners who want more parking spots allowed for their vacation rentals (bunk houses, in some cases). The parking problem goes residential. Hope it doesn’t invade the house next to you. The city seems to be getting a handle on this challenge by turning down more licences for B & B’s

One more parking related issue we need to solve is the visual pollution  created by parking on front yards in residential areas, eg. 4 cars in front of a 2 bedroom home, boats, trailers and kids toys. It makes front yards look like wrecking yards. My irises are insulted.

The solution, of course, is more tax dollars for enforcement.

Pet Peeve of The Month; supermarket slobs who find the energy to wheel a shopping cart to the car then have a fatigue attack when it comes to taking it back….especially in the winter.

Yours in sarcasm,

Ms. Anne Thorpe