Hospital parking options still being assessed |

Hospital parking options still being assessed

The main east parking lot behind Valley View Hospital is pretty much maxed out day in and day out during weekdays.The hospital continues to look toward ways to add more parking in the area.
John Stroud | Post Independent

Valley View Hospital is busy filling in the remaining empty spaces in the Calaway Young Cancer Center building, including a relocated second-floor cafeteria and new administrative offices that are on track for completion in May.

This month, the new brain and comprehensive spine center and plastic surgery center are due to open on the third floor. And by September the new cath lab and other facilities will open on that floor as well.

With that continued growth, though, comes an ever-growing parking problem that the hospital is in the process of assessing and determining the best solutions for, Valley View CEO Gary Brewer said during the Hospital Association’s annual meeting on Thursday.

“We don’t have enough parking, we know that,” Brewer said in his annual progress report.

Valet parking alone has increased 87 percent since 2011, from about 26,600 vehicles parked to 38,600 last year, he reported.

Even with a total of 837 parking spaces, including 67 valet spaces (28 serving the Cancer Center alone), 326 patient/visitor spaces and 444 dedicated employee spaces, parking on a daily basis is usually overflowing into the surrounding neighborhoods.

The city of Glenwood Springs has requested in recent years as the Cancer Center was being completed that the hospital address its parking needs. A conceptual plan to build a multi-level parking deck where the existing east parking lot is located was given preliminary approval by the city at one point.

But, with a price tag of between $8 million and $10 million, Brewer said the hospital has continued to explore options. That includes buying up additional land nearby for more surface parking, he said.

“It is something we’re looking at,” Brewer said.

Meanwhile, the number of full-time-equivalent employees at Valley View also continues to increase, from 748 in 2014 to 852 last year. Overall wages and benefits have also increased, from $89.8 million in 2014 to more than $106 million last year.

In addition, the VVH Auxiliary maintains a volunteer corps of 135 adults and 17 juniors, logging 15,000 volunteer hours in 2015, Brewer said.

The Calaway Young Cancer Center is now accredited by the American College of Surgeons’ Commission on Cancer, he also noted.

Since opening in 2012, the Cancer Center has seen an increase in total infusion (chemotherapy) treatments from 1,181 to 6,792 last year, while the number radiation treatments has increased in that four-year period from 746 to 4,531.

Integrated care services have increased the most, from 2,464 in 2012 to 16,159 last year, Brewer reported. The Cancer Center saw an increase in integrated care services from 2014 to 2015 alone of more than 8,500.

Last summer, the new Rona’s Healing Home opened, located on land provided by Bill and Erin Lee across from the Cancer Center. The facility provides limited overnight stays and support for cancer patients who are receiving treatments.

The Healing Home is named for former Valley View nurse Rona Chorman, who died from cancer in 2010.

Off site, Valley View also recently completed a renovation at its Silt Care Center, including six new exam rooms.

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Glenwood Springs and Garfield County make the Post Independent’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.