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Niagara Falls
Wednesday, March 22, 2023
Letter: Medical centre parking lot needs an alternate entrance
Letter writer John Sayers says access to the parking lot at the new Village Medical Centre is far from ideal. He suggest allowing people to enter and exit via Perez Road. Supplied

Dear editor:

There’s lots of free parking at our new Village Medical Centre. The big problem is getting to it.

If you look at the map sent out by the Niagara North Family Health Team, you’ll see why.

To get to the parking lot, you have to drive through the existing parking lot in front of the CIBC branch and past Shoppers Drug Mart. 

The existing perpendicular parking for those businesses gives rise to cars backing out into the middle of the road that you will have to drive through.

That drive was exciting enough with the volume of cars at the bank and Shoppers before it also became the only access to the medical centre parking. 

Once you have reached the end of that leg past those stores, you have to turn into a narrow alleyway between Shoppers and the building that houses the Garrison House restaurant.

It’s a narrow alley and only about one car wide. The map shows two ways but I don’t recommend trying to pass in that alley.

For now, it’s the only way in – and the only way out.

Astounded that no planner would approve this, I made the trip myself. Whoever in the town let this happen when approving the plans must have slept through the classes in “Traffic Flow 101.”

A traffic count on the road that will now become the local venue for lovers of bumper cars surely would have highlighted the problem.

And it doesn’t take a tape measure to determine that you can’t fit two cars side-by-side down that narrow alley between the stores.

I asked a construction supervisor on-site why there was no access from the parking lot to Perez Street, which runs along one side of the lot.

He explained that there would be another exit somewhere once all the development in the other part of the block is completed.

I’m estimating that phase is likely to take another year at least. And will this be the only parking lot for the entire complex?

Here’s a tip for the town: issue an order to the developer to open up the lot for access and exit onto Perez Street – NOW. 

And here’s a tip for anyone who gets hit by a car while crossing the “Shoppers Autobahn:” Have your lawyer sue the town for permitting a hazard it knew – or should have known – was a serious safety risk.  

John Sayers

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