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You can't make this stuff up!

Re: You can't make this stuff up!

Postby Darkre » Jun 21st, 2017, 8:42 pm

XT225 wrote:Perhaps you weren't around when we had the two booths; one North of town; the other South. Worked well and they do NOT have to be pricey; could be the size of the Peach with minimal expense. Digital is ok for some but actually talking to someone face to face and getting paper brochures/directions is invaluable. With the growing senior populations in the country, digital doesn't always cut it.

Being conservative, the cost to operate 2 staffed booths would be at least $420,000 if it currently costs $281,000 for one. That is 60% of Travel Penticton's entire budget and would leave them with only $280,000 for advertising.

On top of that staffed booths are open limited hours while digital kiosks would be available 24/7. How many tourists are missed due to the limited operating hours of the info centre?

Most seniors are capable of operating a touch screen display and if it was required a printer could easily be added to the kiosks. While face to face may seem invaluable is it really an effective use of Travel Penticton's limited budget to be paying $20 per interaction with each traveler?
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Re: You can't make this stuff up!

Postby southy » Jun 22nd, 2017, 5:56 am

Darke - once again you throw numbers out without any factual support. Show us some links, stats, actual costing, actual expenses, you are simply stating your perceived numbers and opinion.
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Re: You can't make this stuff up!

Postby Darkre » Jun 22nd, 2017, 6:08 am

look at the previous links I posted Southy. The numbers are in the document specifically regarding the Penticton information centre study. At present it costs Penticton Travel $12.57 per visitor and the number of visitors to the travel info centre were inflated by the visitors to the wine information centre. I can't find the link again but there is a document that shows that visits to Penticton's info centre were double those that visited Vernon and Kelowna a few years ago. That is where I came up with the $20 per visitor figure as the main difference between those facilities and ours was the inclusion of the wine info centre.
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Re: You can't make this stuff up!

Postby southy » Jun 23rd, 2017, 9:07 am

Darke - this letter from Jake Kimberly former mayor of Penticton really nails the real issue I was speaking of:

Bad planning by the City

Dear Editor:

One of the most important responsibilities of a city council is to make sure that when deciding on growth and development of a city they have to take into consideration future projections of how the increased traffic, increased parking requirements of any development can and will be accommodated.

We are now witnessing that this council failed miserably in that task when they gave their approval to locate the casino on a well-used parking lot. A parking area which accommodated the tourist information centre, the Penticton Curling Club and the South Okanagan Events Centre.

Council’s decision not only created major onsite parking shortfalls, they also created major traffic problems on all the surrounding roads. They also created major parking problems for the surrounding residential properties by taking away their right to park in front of their homes and having to deal with the additional casino traffic.

The tourist association has now requested the city have a new office building constructed in front of the SOEC. This request has again demonstrated that this council failed to consider how they were going to accommodate the tourist association with their approval on the casino zoning. Obviously the tourist association needs a high-profile corner to attract travelling tourists. Again no vision/planning went into their decision on zoning for the future.

To now have a councillor (Max Picton) who helped create these problems suggest that the tourism request to have their new office located on the centre driveway into the SOEC cannot be supported by council. Why, because the city may want to build a new ice rink there?

What are you thinking of? Please look again at the confusion you and your fellow councillors have already created, referred to above, by awarding the casino zoning on that site.

It should be noted by city staff, the only reason that centre entrance/exit onto the SOEC is not being used full-time is because the Ministry of Highways would not allow it to be used as a permanent entrance/ exit onto Eckhardt Avenue. The Ministry allowed the city to construct that entrance, but stipulated that it can only be used on special occasions, hence the name “The Queens Entrance.”

Jake Kimberley

Penticton
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Re: You can't make this stuff up!

Postby Darkre » Jun 23rd, 2017, 6:46 pm

Unfortunately, Jake Kimberley is forming an opinion and jumping to the same conclusions as yourself without having all the information. While I don’t have that information either I prefer to do my own research and wait for more information to come out before climbing on my soap box. What is truly unfortunate is that due to Kimberley’s statement, and presence in the community, many people will adopt his opinion rather than seeking out the details for themselves and then will ignore the truth when the details come out because it does not fit the narrative they have previously created based on incomplete information.

While Kimberley states that council lacks vision and foresight the truth is that we haven’t seen what councils vision is. I believe it has been councils intention, since agreeing to locate the Casino where they did, to knock down Memorial. It is an old and inefficient building to operate and will cost a lot to refurbish. The reason council has probably not shared this information at this time is that, due to all of the nay-sayers in this town, they need “proof” that the facility is not worth saving. Hence all the survey work, engineering reports and the arena task force. Tearing down a memorial building is not an easy thing to do in a city full of seniors. I don’t have any proof so I haven’t taken to the soapbox to share this opinion because I don’t have all the information, however I decided to share this now to play devils advocate.

Like yourself, Kimberley also calls out Max Picton for comments that are perfectly logical and legitimate. Council can not commit to allowing the information centre at that location as there is another group interested in that property. Until council has had time to assess both proposals it is ridiculous to suggest that council should do whatever it takes to accommodate Tourism Penticton simply because they lost their old home. Let’s make sure that whatever is being built in that location is what is truly best for the community moving forward, not rush to a decision that we will regret later.

He also jumps to the conclusion that the city failed to consider how they were going to accommodate the information centre. It is his belief, and that of Tourism Penticton, that the information centre should be located at a high-profile location near the entrance to the city. Based on the limited information available it would appear that the city, at least initially, prefers a downtown location. They are determined to create a vibrant community there and you can see the appeal to them of having a tourist draw like the info centre downtown. The cities vision may not be the same as Tourism Pentictons but that does not mean that they failed to consider what they were going to do with the info centre.

He also makes a statement regarding increased traffic and people on neighbouring streets being unable to park in front of their homes due to the casino. That area was designed and built on Mr. Kimberley’s watch to handle thousands of people arriving and leaving that location at the exact same time for events. If there are any traffic issues cause by the few hundred people attending the casino on a daily basis, spread out over an 18 hour day, then that is his fault not the current councils. I also regularly use the SOEC and community centre. There are usually hundreds of empty parking spaces between the 2 locations. It is only during events that parking becomes difficult yet even then people were already parking on the side streets to avoid paying for parking. Once again this is a problem he created not the current council.

I truly wish that the “Letters to the Editor” needed to be fact checked before being printed. All too often I’ve seen people spreading opinions based on incomplete or even incorrect information. Readers then form their opinions based on the incorrect information provided and share their opinions, creating a vicious circle that is very difficult to overcome.

The one thing I will give former mayor Jake Kimberley is that if anyone should know what poor planning and mismanagement of a project is, it would be the person that managed to build an arena that was supposed to cost $40million for $81million.
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Re: You can't make this stuff up!

Postby southy » Jun 24th, 2017, 6:08 am

Yup - ok!
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Re: You can't make this stuff up!

Postby seewood » Jun 24th, 2017, 6:46 am

Great post Darkre. Good read

Personally a tourist info booth downtown would not be the best location.
Take this weekend for example, Elvis downtown, Beach cruise, and market on Sat. on main st. With other events throughout the year that take up downtown parking, me thinks another location would be more prudent.
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Re: You can't make this stuff up!

Postby Darkre » Jun 24th, 2017, 10:31 am

southy wrote:Yup - ok!

C’mon Southy, you can do better than that.

Explain how Picton’s comments are anything but prudent based on the fact that two groups are interested in the same property. Is it not a good idea to wait until council has all of the relevant information regarding future use of this site before committing to either groups vision?

Explain how a few hundred extra people attending the SOEC complex over an 18 hour period is greatly impacting traffic.

Explain how the city has no vision when reality is that we simply haven’t been given councils vision yet. Is it wrong for council to delay sharing their plans for the site until they have all of the information required to make that decision?

Wouldn’t it be worse to rush to judgment and make a rash decision based on the limited information presently available to them? Isn't that what Kimberley is doing himself?

One issue right now is parking but that will be solved if they decide to knock down Memorial. Not only would that create 100 additional stall, it would redirect the current visitors to Memorial to the new arena location on the other side of the complex.

Another issue is what to do with the tourist info centre. The city and Tourism Penticton seem to have differing visions for this but differing visions does not equate to lack of planning to accommodate the info centre. I’m sure they will come to some sort of arrangement once the city decides what to do with the arena issue. Maybe they can have a corner location in the new arena at their previously stated ideal location. Maybe that would even be a cheaper option to build than their current proposal.
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Re: You can't make this stuff up!

Postby XT225 » Jun 24th, 2017, 10:55 am

Darkre wrote:
One issue right now is parking but that will be solved if they decide to knock down Memorial. Not only would that create 100 additional stall, it would redirect the current visitors to Memorial to the new arena location on the other side of the complex.



Maybe time to just ease up and let the powers that be decide (after much more input from the public and advisory committee). There will not only be a big push by the older folks NOT to tear down Memorial but IF its proven that it is worth saving and that a renovated Memorial Arena would be millions less than tearing it down and building a new one, then thats likely what will happen. The taxpayer bank is not overflowing with money at the moment. Ripping down Memorial wouldn't be cheap and all it would do would be to give the Casino closer parking.
I do agree that having a permanent tourist info booth somewhere on that property would be a good plan.
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Re: You can't make this stuff up!

Postby southy » Jun 25th, 2017, 1:21 pm

Yup XT - it appears Darke has it all figured out. Tear down Memorial and BAM - instantly 100 more stalls for parking. I do agree with you though that having a permanent location for the tourism office on the SOEC site makes perfect sense it would be visible and accessible to traffic coming from the North and South. But then again things that make perfect sense don't always happen as we have seen way to many times with this current council.
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Re: You can't make this stuff up!

Postby Darkre » Jun 25th, 2017, 7:35 pm

XT225 wrote:
Darkre wrote:
One issue right now is parking but that will be solved if they decide to knock down Memorial. Not only would that create 100 additional stall, it would redirect the current visitors to Memorial to the new arena location on the other side of the complex.



Maybe time to just ease up and let the powers that be decide (after much more input from the public and advisory committee). There will not only be a big push by the older folks NOT to tear down Memorial but IF its proven that it is worth saving and that a renovated Memorial Arena would be millions less than tearing it down and building a new one, then thats likely what will happen. The taxpayer bank is not overflowing with money at the moment. Ripping down Memorial wouldn't be cheap and all it would do would be to give the Casino closer parking.
I do agree that having a permanent tourist info booth somewhere on that property would be a good plan.

Maybe I should have capitalized the if in that statement. If you look at my previous posts in this thread you will see that I have always qualified this as a potential outcome.

It also will not be millions cheaper to renovate Memorial. Memorial needs a new cement floor, new boards, new piping, new refrigeration plant, new laminated beams, new dressing rooms, reconfigured bleachers to accommodate the new dressing rooms. It may need new support beams and footings. They would probably have to account for a new roof in the costing as well. The only cost savings will be found in the external walls of the building.

Yes a memorial building is difficult to tear down but other municipalities have managed to satisfy the public outcry by naming the replacement building as the new memorial. Penticton could accomplish this by naming the large ice sheet the SOEC Memorial Arena with the added benefit of including a tribute to the old Memorial Arena near the BCHHOF.
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Re: You can't make this stuff up!

Postby Darkre » Jun 25th, 2017, 7:46 pm

southy wrote:Yup XT - it appears Darke has it all figured out. Tear down Memorial and BAM - instantly 100 more stalls for parking. I do agree with you though that having a permanent location for the tourism office on the SOEC site makes perfect sense it would be visible and accessible to traffic coming from the North and South. But then again things that make perfect sense don't always happen as we have seen way to many times with this current council.

southy, once again you have failed to contribute anything to this discussion beyond bashing the current city council and attacking the messenger that is providing a contrary narrative to your argument. When I provided the information you requested as to expenses of the visitor centre you ignored the link I posted and then accused me of making everything up. After I redirected you to the link you haven't responded in any manner.

Please answer the questions I posted to you above. You requested additional information from me and I responded. I would appreciate the same respect.
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Re: You can't make this stuff up!

Postby southy » Jun 25th, 2017, 8:16 pm

Ahhh respect??? You must have me confused with someone else. I totally disagree with everything you've said. The links? Most are outdated information. Reread your posts Darke you may see that you are soap boxing for city hall and doing a fairly good job of contridicting yourself. You missed my point entirely .. It is more about how this council should have been aware the tourism location issue was going to come up ... They either chose to ignore it on purpose or they are simply playing political games. I get it - The social media aspect ... the other you don't get is that a brick and mortar tourism office will serve a vital need. Both go hand in hand. Suck it up Darkre and realize not everyone believes this council is doing a good job.

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Re: You can't make this stuff up!

Postby Darkre » Jun 25th, 2017, 9:16 pm

southy wrote:Ahhh respect??? You must have me confused with someone else. I totally disagree with everything you've said. The links? Most are outdated information. Reread your posts Darke you may see that you are soap boxing for city hall and doing a fairly good job of contridicting yourself. You missed my point entirely .. It is more about how this council should have been aware the tourism location issue was going to come up ... They either chose to ignore it on purpose or they are simply playing political games. I get it - The social media aspect ... the other you don't get is that a brick and mortar tourism office will serve a vital need. Both go hand in hand. Suck it up Darkre and realize not everyone believes this council is doing a good job.

How the heck is a report from March 2016, commissioned specifically about the Penticton Visitor Centre outdated? You can not get any more relevant or much more timely information than that. The 2nd link was to show that 4 years ago visits to tourist info centres were in rapid decline and had been for many years.

Also how was the city to know that Tourism Penticton would request the exact same location as was being considered for a new arena? How should they have responded differently once they became aware of this conflict?

Please also point out anywhere I have contradicted myself. Just because the information is contrary to your beliefs does not make it "Fake News"
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Re: You can't make this stuff up!

Postby twobits » Jun 26th, 2017, 7:30 pm

My twobits........Darkre has nailed it. Hanging on to past tourism marketing models makes no sense whatsoever. It's like saying the yellow pages are still relevant because seniors don't have smart phones.
Do not argue with an idiot. He will drag you down to his level and beat you with experience.

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