Huge park­ing shake-up for ARI

Bar­ri­ers could re­turn to Forester­hill site

Evening Express (Extra Edition) - - FRONT PAGE - By David Ewen dewen@ajl.co.uk

A MAS­SIVE £1 mil­lion park­ing shake-up is planned for the North-east’s main hos­pi­tal site.

Five hun­dred ex­tra spaces could be added t o Forester­hill in Aberdeen and shut­tle buses used in­side and around the site.

But staff have been warned that not all will be el­i­gi­ble for per­mits to park.

Al­ter­na­tives pro­posed in­clude spend­ing £100,000 a year al­low­ing 200 work­ers to park at Kingswells park and ride, with buses used to trasnport staff to NHS sites.

Bar­ri­ers will be put in place at Forester­hill – which in­cludes Aberdeen Royal In­fir­mary, and the chil­dren’s and ma­ter­nity hos­pi­tals – to pre­vent abuse of the park­ing.

The much dis­cussed pro­pos­als have been fi­nalised and will be con­sid­ered by the NHS Grampian health board on Tues­day.

In an in­tro­duc­tory pa­per, chief ex­ec­u­tive Richard Carey, pic­tured, said: “Tak­ing no ac­tion to im­prove the cur­rent car park­ing ar­range­ments at Forester­hill is not an op­tion that NHS Grampian can af­ford to con­tem­plate.

“The pro­pos­als put for­ward of­fer the like­li­hood of sig­nif­i­cant ben­e­fit to the qual­ity of pa­tient care and ex­pe­ri­ence.”

Among high­lighted prob­lems are ver­bal abuse over spaces, clin­i­cians miss­ing ap­point­ments and “risk to emer­gency ac­cess” from peo­ple park­ing where they are not sup­posed to.

Some 7,500 staff use Forester­hill, which caters to 1,500 out­pa­tient ap­point­ments, but the site has only 2,500 spaces. It is pro­posed that 500 spaces are added to the main car park at a cost of £1m.

But the strat­egy stated: “It would ap­pear in­evitable that some form of phys­i­cal con­trol and man­age­ment of the Forester­hill site must be in­tro­duced in the in­terim.” Op­tions iden­ti­fied in­clude bar­ri­ers con­trolled by staff or vol­un­teers, num­ber plate recog­ni­tion tech­nol­ogy and lock­able park­ing space posts.

Pri­or­ity will be given to out­pa­tients with clinic ap­point­ments and staff need­ing rapid ac­cess to ve­hi­cles. The strat­egy said: “The in­ten­tion is to en­sure that ‘all day park­ing’ is avoided and that there is a reg­u­lar flow-through of ve­hi­cles al­low­ing those who need to find a space at var­i­ous times of the day to have a very good chance of suc­cess.”

A per­mit sys­tem for staff would be an “es­sen­tial el­e­ment” of the ar­range­ments.

Sev­eral cri­te­ria, in­clud­ing dis­tance and ac­ces­si­bil­ity from home, need for a car at work and any fam­ily or per­sonal cir­cum­stances will be used to judge el­i­gi­bil­ity.

The strat­egy warned: “There are not enough spaces so not ev­ery­one

“Al­ter­na­tive ar­range­ments”

who wants a space will get one – only those who can demon­strate great­est need.

“If you have not been as­sessed as el­i­gi­ble for one of the pri­or­ity cat­e­gories you will need to make al­ter­na­tive ar­range­ments to get to work.”

It added: “Par­ents of chil­dren in nurs­ery or pri­mary ed­u­ca­tion may in­clude this in­for­ma­tion on their form but it will not guar­an­tee a space.”

OVER-FILLED: The Forester­hill site in Aberdeen does not have enough spa­ces for the thou­sands of pa­tients and staff who use it.

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