From patient parking to patient care, access is our No. 1 priority

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So let’s say you take your family out for dinner. You’ve picked a great new restaurant, and the food is delicious, the ambiance is perfect, but the wait staff is a bit rude. Well, no matter how great the food is, what are the chances that you’re going to go back? Probably pretty unlikely – right?

Well, our patients and families choose to seek care at Texas Children’s because they know without a doubt that we provide the best quality of care! We have the best and brightest people in the world taking care of their loved ones. However, once they walk through the doors, patients and families evaluate us based on the quality of the service they receive. A big part of that quality of service begins before they even walk through our doors. For many of our patient families, that experience begins with something that should be relatively simple – convenient parking.

When we design and construct our buildings, we include ample parking for our patient families as well. But lately many of our patient families have been unable to find parking in the garages at our Medical Center Campus. That happens in some part because Texas Children’s employees are occupying spaces that have been designated for patient families or are using the valet services intended for our patient families.

Just two weeks ago, Security turned away 51 employees trying to park in Garage 21. That would have been 51 patient families that would have been frustrated or inconvenienced. This ongoing concern has created an overwhelming burden on our patient families who come to Texas Children’s for their care. A couple of comments from a recent Press Ganey survey:

“Parking is terrible. I almost missed an appointment due to waiting 16 minutes just to get into the parking garage and another 15 to 20 minutes to park, as the garage was full.”

 “Parking our vehicle was a nightmare. We spent over an hour trying to get a parking spot.”

 As part of Texas Children’s Step Up for Patients First initiative, we encourage our employees to live compassionately and put our patients and their families first. A simple way to do this includes giving families priority access to parking to help ensure they get to their children’s clinical appointments on time.

Using the limited parking reserved for our patient families is counter to the experience we are all committed to providing them. It also disregards Texas Children’s Parking Policy, which prohibits employees from parking in Texas Children’s Hospital garages 12, 16 or 21 or using valet services when you are here for work purposes. To ensure employees understand this policy and the desire of Texas Children’s to put patients and families first, Security will continue to conduct random monitoring and take appropriate steps to correct this practice.

Having free, dedicated employee parking garages (garages 14 and 19) at the Meyer Building and a large, frequently circulating fleet of employee shuttles provides all employees with convenient alternatives to the limited parking on the Medical Center Campus, which is the only option for our patient families and visitors. Coming to the world’s largest medical center and navigating a parking garage, especially with the temporary closures due to our current construction, is difficult enough for families. Let’s do all we can to ease the experience.

We can create a better experience for patient families and visitors by parking in the designated employee garages so that finding parking is the least of their concerns. It’s a simple step that will have a lasting impact on a family’s experience with us.

Mark H. Wallace

Category: Access, Experience

About Mark A. Wallace

Mark A. Wallace was appointed President and Chief Executive Officer of Texas Children’s Hospital in 1989 at the age of 36. Under his leadership, Texas Children’s has grown into one of the nation’s largest and most comprehensive pediatric and women’s health care organizations, garnering more than 3.6 million patient encounters annually and achieving international recognition as a referral center.

85 thoughts on “From patient parking to patient care, access is our No. 1 priority

  1. S says:

    Can we please get a survey regarding the shuttle service or is there a place we can give feedback? The shuttle service for employees has become a real issue and taking sometimes 25 extra minutes.

    1. Angela Hudson says:

      Thank you S for your suggestion. The leadership in Facilities Operations is paying close attention to the questions and comments on this blog post, and indeed, a survey is being considered.

      Stay tuned to Connect to ensure you have the opportunity to make your voice heard on the survery!

      Angela J. Hudson
      Director, Corporate Communications

      1. RNC says:

        It seems in the past couple of months that the shuttle service has been very disorganized. There will be 4 busses close together, then none for a long time – it gets so bad that the entire lobby of Garage 19 will be full of employees but no shuttle in sight. For pickup (at Feigin, anyway) after shifts, there’s also often a long line – sometimes so long that you have to wait for the next shuttle. This hasn’t always been such an issue until recently. It takes a minimum of 30 minutes to park and get to work.

        1. Laura Reynolds says:

          I apologize for the lengthy delays that you have experienced with shuttle services. Our leadership team is working closely with the shuttle vendor to review data and improve the route schedules to reduce wait times. If you continue to experience delays, you can call the shuttle hotline (4-2666) and provide the approximate time of your wait. TCH employees also have access to the Meyer South parking lot, which is on Greenbriar directly across from the Metro Rail stop. Many of our employees like to park in this lot and take the rail to the Medical Center.

    2. M says:

      For the 10 am and 1030 am employees the shuttles does not circulate in a timely manner making many employees late. This results in tardies which results in write ups that are not the employee’s fault, therefore in fear of losing your job, creates a choice of do I wait on a unreliable shuttle bus or do I pay for parking and make it to work on time?? There needs to be a lot more buses leaving for this time frame time to accommodate the later arriving shifts.

      1. Laura Reynolds says:

        We recently added a 3rd circulator shuttle between 10 and 3 pm. If you continue to experience delays, please call the Shuttle Hotline (42666) and provide the approximate time you arrived at Garage 19 and the amount of time you waited..

  2. Jay says:

    Are employees allowed to park in the CCC parking garage on the weekends?

    1. Khoi says:

      Yes, only for night shift on Friday night and Saturday night.

    2. Angela Hudson says:

      Thank you Jay for your message about parking at Wallace Tower. Mr. Wallace sent a note this morning responding to some of the initial questions and concerns about employee parking. One bit of information was specifically about after-hours parking:

      After-hours parking
      • Garage 16: After-hours employees who work in West Tower, Abercrombie, Feigin or Wallace Tower have access to Wallace Tower/Garage 16 on weekends. You may enter Garage 16 between 6 p.m. Friday and 4 p.m. Sunday. Employees will need to exit Garage 16 by 8 a.m. Monday to ensure capacity for our patients and visitors on Monday morning. Garage 16 is not available for after-hours parking on holidays that fall on weekdays.

      • Texas Medical Center garages: After-hours employees have access to Texas Medical Center garages between 6 p.m. and 8 a.m. on weekdays and holidays. You also have access on weekends between 6 p.m. Friday and 8 a.m. Monday.

      You can read Mr. Wallace’s note re: parking/shuttles in its entirety here: http://www.onthemark.org/experience/thank-you-for-your-feedback-about-parking-heres-what-were-doing

      Angela J. Hudson
      Director, Corporate Communications

  3. Barry says:

    That is a good point about parking lot capacity. Also, patients have been getting lost finding their way to the emergency room and walking between parking and patient care locations. Please make a better effort to improve signage both outside and inside the buildings. Thank you.

    1. Laura Reynolds says:

      Thank you for your feedback, Barry. An exterior wayfinding plan is being implemented by our Graphics team and a focus area for FY18 is to improve the exterior area at the EC.

  4. Frances Racine says:

    I wholeheartedly agree with everything you’ve said, however a bigger concern is the amount of money patients and their families have to pay for parking. Seeing the STAR Kids members in their homes and hearing parents say they cannot afford to pay the parking fees when their children are in the hospital is something I hear every day. It’s a huge burden. I hear it from our members and from people in the community that have children in the hospital. They have driven 2+ hours to Houston then have to pay a small fortune to park for an appointment or surgery. There has to be something that can be done…I feel like the patients immediate family should not have to pay for parking. This one thing can make the lives better for the people we serve.

  5. Keisha Logan says:

    Understanding and being passionate about providing the best patient care possible, but what about the employees? We have been forced to parking in a garage that is not only for our wonderful Texas Children’s patients, but ALL of the Medical Centers other hospitals and their employees, patients, and families. Just as the families are having to wait and drive around for an hour, we do to! I work over night and there use to be a time where we could park in the Pavilion building, and because of this very same reason, we are not allowed to park there either because of families parking concerns. With just speaking to some parents, they are unaware of the multiple parking areas and only focus on those that are “lit up” with the Texas Children’s signs. Just a suggestion, designate one of our many garages to TCH Employees only, and I think these “issues” will not be as much. Again, this is just a suggestion, but please remember that the Beautiful employees that continues to come in and provide the outstanding service needs the compassion and understanding too.

    1. Angela Hudson says:

      Thank you Keisha for your message. Please know that Mr. Wallace, as well as the leaders in Facilities Operations who oversee employee parking and shuttle transportation are paying close attention to your questions, suggestions and requests.

      Where appropriate, someone from the Facilities team will follow up either here on the blog, with employees directly and/or there will be follow-up communications on Connect as improvements are implemented. Also, Mr. Wallace sent a note this morning responding to some of the initial questions and concerns about employee parking. You can read it here: http://www.onthemark.org/experience/thank-you-for-your-feedback-about-parking-heres-what-were-doing

      Thank you so much for taking the time to read Mr. Wallace’s blog and voice your thoughts. They are much appreciated – that’s how change happens!

      Angela J. Hudson
      Director, Corporate Communications

  6. Katie Kalenda-Daggett says:

    Thank you for this reminder, Mr. Wallace! It is often in the most mundane of decisions and tasks that each of us has the biggest opportunity to change the way a family experiences Texas Children’s. As each of us considers the patient in our daily decisions, then together we create a lasting high-impact, patient centered system and experience!

  7. Jeffrey morales says:

    I park at garage 19, that being said when I get in at 12, it takes 30 minutes to get to feign. Please provide more buses. These long wait times push employees to park at garage 2 in order to get to work on time.

    Thank you Jeffrey Morales

    1. Laura Reynolds says:

      I apologize for the lengthy delays that you have experienced with shuttle services. Our leadership team is working closely with the shuttle vendor to review data and improve the route schedules to reduce wait times. If you continue to experience delays, you can call the shuttle hotline (4-2666) and provide the shuttle number and approximate time of your ride. TCH employees also have access to the Meyer South parking lot, which is on Greenbriar directly across from the Metro Rail stop. Many of our employees like to park in this lot and take the rail to the Medical Center.

  8. Jeffrey morales says:

    Another way to fix parking. Is to prevent employee badges from working at garage two for free entrance, after hours and on the weekend.

    Thank you, peace and love
    Jeffrey Morales

    1. Lisa says:

      We are allowed to utilize garage 1 and 2 for nightshift and weekends and holidays. There is not bus service from Garage 19 at this time.

    2. Keisha Logan says:

      Not trying to be funny, but where are employees that work night shift and weekends to park?

      1. Angela Hudson says:

        Thank you Keisha for your message. Mr. Wallace sent a note this morning responding to some of the initial questions and concerns about employee parking. One bit of information was specifically about after-hours parking:

        After-hours parking
        • Garage 16: After-hours employees who work in West Tower, Abercrombie, Feigin or Wallace Tower have access to Wallace Tower/Garage 16 on weekends. You may enter Garage 16 between 6 p.m. Friday and 4 p.m. Sunday. Employees will need to exit Garage 16 by 8 a.m. Monday to ensure capacity for our patients and visitors on Monday morning. Garage 16 is not available for after-hours parking on holidays that fall on weekdays.

        • Texas Medical Center garages: After-hours employees have access to Texas Medical Center garages between 6 p.m. and 8 a.m. on weekdays and holidays. You also have access on weekends between 6 p.m. Friday and 8 a.m. Monday.

        You can read Mr. Wallace’s note re: parking/shuttles in its entirety here: http://www.onthemark.org/experience/thank-you-for-your-feedback-about-parking-heres-what-were-doing

        Angela J. Hudson
        Director, Corporate Communications

        1. Christy Baylor says:

          I have worked night weekends for years. Garage 16 is great for Friday and Saturday nights, but night shift does not start our shift until 1840 each night. On Sundays, we are not allowed in Garage 16 because we do not arrive prior to 1600. We are out by 0800 each Monday morning. Would it be possible to extend the arrival time to 1900 on Sunday evenings, so that the night weekend staff is able to park in Garage 16? Again, we are out by 0800 each Monday morning.

          1. Laura Reynolds says:

            Thank you for your feedback, Christy. We are evaluating the impact of extending after-hours access hours on patient/visitor parking. While the garages may have additional capacity in the evenings, the spaces fill up very quickly on weekday mornings when the patients begin arriving for their appointments.

  9. RN says:

    There is a large safety concern for staff regarding parking in by Meyer building and taking the shuttle. After ‘peak’ times, the shuttle only comes by every 30 minutes. So if I were to pick up extra hours or stay late for any other reason, I risk sitting outside by myself in the dark on a bench in the medical center. This has happened many times and security will not provide rides or assistance when asked.

    Also, if staff are working under TCH policy (parking in the Meyer building garages) and are acting in capacity as a TCH employee (not allowed on the shuttles without a badge) then I believe staff should be clocking in and out at the Meyer building to reflect the additional time that we are spending under TCH direction.

    It is a great inconvenience to park at Meyer and shuttle into work and it often adds up to an hour onto 12+ hour shifts on top of our daily commute to the medical center. We love our patients and their families and already give up our lunches, breaks, and health for them; it’s hard to sacrifice additional time away from our families, too.

    Thank you for bringing up this very significant (for patients and staff) issue. It’s a difficult task to manage parking for such a quickly growing hospital system and there are so many perspectives to consider.

    1. TCH employee says:

      I couldn’t of stated it better. As of now I pay to park at TWU even though free parking is offered at garage 19 because it saves me 40 minutes to an hour everyday compared to waiting for a shuttle. It takes a big chunk out of my check but I cant afford to lose my job for being late either. I wish we would be able to clock in and out from garage 19 after all we get on the TCH shuttle from there.

  10. RN says:

    I understand the families we serve and parking but understand us who serve the families. We will have to be leaving our families earlier, getting home later and there will be increased frustration and anger. Why was a parking garage not built for legacy tower? Don’t we own the Baylor building across from Pavilion? Can that one be used for night shift parking. Parking in those far garages and having to walk so far will place an extra burden on employees. You are asking us to put in a 14 hour day rather than 12 but only getting paid for 12 hours. I have heard horror stories about the west tower parking and its safety. Nurses tell me it takes 30 minutes to get in and out. As important as the families are here at TCH, my family is just as important and my time valuable. There has to be a better solution than to put more burden and hardships on the nurses and other employees and at the same time assisting our families to make their stay easier.

    1. Angela Hudson says:

      Thank you RN for both of your messages. Please know that Mr. Wallace, as well as the leaders in Facilities Operations who oversee employee parking and shuttle transportation are paying close attention to your questions, suggestions and requests.

      Where appropriate, someone from the Facilities team will follow up either here on the blog, with employees directly and/or there will be follow-up communications on Connect as improvements are implemented. Also, Mr. Wallace sent a note this morning responding to some of the initial questions and concerns about employee parking. You can read it here: http://www.onthemark.org/experience/thank-you-for-your-feedback-about-parking-heres-what-were-doing

      Thank you so much for taking the time to read Mr. Wallace’s blog and voice your thoughts. They are much appreciated – that’s how change happens!

      Angela J. Hudson
      Director, Corporate Communications

      1. Original RN says:

        Thank you for your close attention and personalized responses to everyone concerned about our parking situation; I just wanted to clarify that several responses to the blog were entered by several different people using RN moniker.

      2. 3rs Shifter says:

        FYI, there is plenty of parking spaces available for 3rd shift employees in the PFW building. Just drive to B4 and pick a spot.

  11. Jacqueline Cotton says:

    I use the park and ride or ride share with my husband so this doesn’t affect me on a daily basis any more, but it may help deter some employees and/ or help recognize the issue of the time involved in parking offsite and shuttling to the main campus or PFW if a badge clock in station (s) were added to the offsite parking areas. Like mentioned in some of the above comments it can add considerable time to the day added x each work day and because so many use it, sometimes there are waits and delays during peak hours. Some colleagues have expressed frustration with that amount of time especially if there were delays and then they accrue tardies. Is there a way to put a clock in garage option in the garage and then people could still clock in at their usual clock in stations for timecard but would not be penalized as tardies if garage clock in prior to designated time? I think for some employees it is that threat of tardiness that drives their decision to park in the main building garage. Occasionally, there are reasons people need to leave work early or quickly and the 30 minutes to retrieve their car from offsite can mean the difference of making or missing their appointment. Maybe a special circumstance X number of times a year arrangement with the Baylor or a nearby parking as an option would be an option for those cases.
    Recently, the rearrangement in PFW garage due to construction/ maintenance is likely making the problem more noticeable or creating a noticeable problem where it was not as evident previously.
    We are thankful for parking and the subsidizing of our parking.
    Thank you,

  12. Karen, CPhT says:

    Having just seen Mr. Wallace’s response to blog comments, I would like to request that signage be placed in the West Tower elevators to indicate that parking in that building is on Level B2. Working in pharmacy (the main pharmacy is located on B1), I can not count the number of times I have exited the elevators only to find a patient’s family looking around lost. They are looking for parking 99% of the time. It is extremely frustrating for them when I have to tell them that they will need to wait for another elevator to take them down one more level to the parking garage. A simple sticker with the word “Parking” next to the B2 button would be an efficient way to help these families!

    1. Angela Hudson says:

      Thank you Karen for your message and for that idea! Please know that Mr. Wallace, as well as the leaders in Facilities Operations who oversee employee parking and shuttle transportation are paying close attention to your questions, suggestions and requests.

      Where appropriate, someone from the Facilities team will follow up either here on the blog, with employees directly and/or there will be follow-up communications on Connect as improvements are implemented. Also, Mr. Wallace sent a note this morning responding to some of the initial questions and concerns about employee parking. You can read it here: http://www.onthemark.org/experience/thank-you-for-your-feedback-about-parking-heres-what-were-doing

      Thank you so much for taking the time to read Mr. Wallace’s blog and voice your thoughts. They are much appreciated – that’s how change happens!

      Angela J. Hudson
      Director, Corporate Communications

    2. Laura Reynolds says:

      Thank you for your recommendation, Karen. Your request has been assigned to our Graphics team.

  13. Alysha T. Grant says:

    I would also like to add that as an employee of TCP we might not be located at Main campus in the medical center (8080 north Stadium Ste 200) but we are growing and have the option to park at Garage 19 and as of right now we have our own “shuttle” mini van which holds only 5 passengers comfortably but this location houses several offices for TCP Central business office employees along with the centers located on the first floor. The street parking is available can it is parking at your own risk and accidents have taken place along with times of congestion during events taking place at NRG. As a suggestion possible adding the 8080 North Stadium as a stop to the circular routes provided from Garage 19 in order to free up street parking and to release some tension of timing issues.

    1. Angela Hudson says:

      Thank you Alysha for your message. Please know that Mr. Wallace, as well as the leaders in Facilities Operations who oversee employee parking and shuttle transportation are paying close attention to your questions, suggestions and requests.

      Where appropriate, someone from the Facilities team will follow up either here on the blog, with employees directly and/or there will be follow-up communications on Connect as improvements are implemented. Also, Mr. Wallace sent a note this morning responding to some of the initial questions and concerns about employee parking. You can read it here: http://www.onthemark.org/experience/thank-you-for-your-feedback-about-parking-heres-what-were-doing

      Thank you so much for taking the time to read Mr. Wallace’s blog and voice your thoughts. They are much appreciated – that’s how change happens!

      Angela J. Hudson
      Director, Corporate Communications

  14. Stephen Steptoe says:

    Back in the olden days, I drove from Kingwood and parked in a flat lot located behind the Meyer Building. Sometimes I walked from the Meyer Building to West Tower because the shuttle came every 30 minutes. It took between 1 1/2 – 2 hours to commute to work every day. Then I found out that Texas Children’s Hospital paid 100% of Metro fares. I would take the Park and Ride and then transfer to the Metro Hospital bus downtown to work. I got it down to 1 1/2 hours but I wasn’t paying for any gas or putting wear and tear on my car. Now with the Metrorail in the place of the Metro Hospital bus, I get here in 1 hour! I drive less than 5 miles Monday – Friday, I save about $3,000 every year on fares alone (yes, I do the Math every year), and I found that nap time on the bus is priceless. It’s my favorite benefit and I know I’m not contributing to Houston’s traffic problem or our own patient/family parking issues. Especially if you work during the day, I would suggest you at least check into taking advantage of this INCOMPARABLE benefit that Texas Children’s Hospital has so graciously provided.

    1. Angela Hudson says:

      Stephen, thank you so much for sharing this suggestion. I imagine many people may not have even considered what a huge savings this could be – of both time and money!

      Angela J. Hudson
      Director, Corporate Communications

    2. Mo City 170 says:

      I agree! Don’t know what I would do without the bus. I hardly ever buy gas now.
      No tolls, no wear & tear on car, and less stress.
      And FREE, to boot! Very grateful that TCH covers this cost.

  15. Lauren says:

    I just want to thank you for continuing to offer paid parking to employees. As a FT employee and graduate student, I find it really helpful!

  16. Veronica says:

    As a parent of a child who is seen at TCH, I definitely agree about the parking being a hassle to deal with. Experience has taught me to come with plenty of time to help lessen the possibility of arriving late. However, as an employee, I must also say it is the same issue – especially with the shuttles. I have arrived at garage 19 at 8:15 (scheduled to be at work at 8:30 AM) and clocked in past the time creating a tardy. To help ease this, I just come in on the Metrorail close to home. This is a solution for me, but not everyone has the same opportunity. Shuttles do not really run every 7 minutes as posted during peak times.

  17. Gisele Jolivette says:

    I arrive to work an hour or so early just to make it to my desk to clock in on time. On several occasions I waited for a shuttle, sometimes the first in line, yet there is no order. I am not a rude person, yet I have experience rudeness. I get here early and work a full day. People will walk in front of you just to get on the shuttle in the mornings and in the evenings. Can there be something placed to force a line. Sometimes I walk just to have peace, to avoid the rudeness.

  18. Sue Jackson says:

    I really appreciate the free parking and don’t mind the extra time it takes me to get to work. But what I don’t understand is why sometimes when I am going to parking garage 19 around 4:30-5pm, there are 2-4 TCH shuttles just sitting at garage 19. And other times I have seen 3 shuttles leave garage 19 at the same time. Shouldn’t they be spaced out more to pick up employees?

    1. Laura Reynolds says:

      Thank you for your feedback, Sue. We will continue to monitor shuttles for departure and wait times.

  19. Concerned says:

    I got wind of the parking issues of Meyer garage before we moved into PFW. I opted to pay and park in a close by garage. My only concern is the way the staff traffic comes flying out of the lower garage on Fannin at the blind left turn. I would like to see a speed bump installed at the driveway exit to Fannin just to slow those drivers down who are checking their phones as they leave to go.

    1. Angela Hudson says:

      Thank you Concerned for your message. Please know that Mr. Wallace, as well as the leaders in Facilities Operations who oversee employee parking and shuttle transportation are paying close attention to your questions, suggestions and requests.

      Where appropriate, someone from the Facilities team will follow up either here on the blog, with employees directly and/or there will be follow-up communications on Connect as improvements are implemented. Also, Mr. Wallace sent a note this morning responding to some of the initial questions and concerns about employee parking. You can read it here: http://www.onthemark.org/experience/thank-you-for-your-feedback-about-parking-heres-what-were-doing

      Thank you so much for taking the time to read Mr. Wallace’s blog and voice your thoughts. They are much appreciated – that’s how change happens!

      Angela J. Hudson
      Director, Corporate Communications

  20. Rebecca says:

    Can we have the security cameras working at Garage 19? My car was broken into on the 8th floor of Garage 19. I called security and they shrugged their shoulders and said the camera was broken. They said it happens all the time.
    Thank you.

    1. Angela Hudson says:

      Thank you Rebecca for your message. Please know that Mr. Wallace, as well as the leaders in Facilities Operations who oversee employee parking and shuttle transportation are paying close attention to your questions, suggestions and requests.

      Where appropriate, someone from the Facilities team will follow up either here on the blog, with employees directly and/or there will be follow-up communications on Connect as improvements are implemented. Also, Mr. Wallace sent a note this morning responding to some of the initial questions and concerns about employee parking. You can read it here: http://www.onthemark.org/experience/thank-you-for-your-feedback-about-parking-heres-what-were-doing

      Thank you so much for taking the time to read Mr. Wallace’s blog and voice your thoughts. They are much appreciated – that’s how change happens!

      Angela J. Hudson
      Director, Corporate Communications

    2. Laura Reynolds says:

      Thank you for your feedback, Rebecca. I’m sorry for the break-in of your vehicle and addressed your concern with TMC. They verified that their security cameras are working.

  21. Katrina says:

    The parking situation also affects West campus. Employees have designated parking areas. While the patients are our top priority! There are a lot of times where our designated areas for employees are being accommodated by patients. Riding around the parking lot looking for a place to park causes tardiness and some frustration. If I see a patient looking for a place to park, I will allow them the spot. But where does it leave the employees? We have to be in our area, at our scheduled time to be there for our patients to provide the best care. Some of the parking are being used by contractors as well. Don’t dare leave for lunch. I did that one day and it took me 20 minutes to find parking. A patient had to take her child to the EC and stopped me walking, due to no parking. People were parked in places that wasn’t a spot to park. Luckily, we found a spot for her to park rather quickly. We do not want to have patients leaving and missing appointments, due to parking. Also, the employees should be able to park without issue to arrive at there designated area on time to accompany the patients. Lastly, summer time is coming up where we will see an increase in patient appointments. Great discussion topic. Regards

  22. ET says:

    Thank you for addressing employee parking issue. What about the people who use Metro public transportation like Park and Ride, and regular buses? They have no parking privilege when they work weekends and holidays. Park and Ride does not operate during weekends and some regular bus schedules are trimmed down. Is there any way to make garage 16 available for them.

    1. Angela Hudson says:

      Thank you ET for your message. Please know that Mr. Wallace, as well as the leaders in Facilities Operations who oversee employee parking and shuttle transportation are paying close attention to your questions, suggestions and requests.

      Where appropriate, someone from the Facilities team will follow up either here on the blog, with employees directly and/or there will be follow-up communications on Connect as improvements are implemented. Also, Mr. Wallace sent a note this morning responding to some of the initial questions and concerns about employee parking. You can read it here: http://www.onthemark.org/experience/thank-you-for-your-feedback-about-parking-heres-what-were-doing

      Thank you so much for taking the time to read Mr. Wallace’s blog and voice your thoughts. They are much appreciated – that’s how change happens!

      Angela J. Hudson
      Director, Corporate Communications

  23. Laura Rodriguez says:

    I understand the parking frustration as both an employee and having a child that is a patient. The incidents I’ve witnessed are people utilizing the valet services and parking garages/lots other than for visits or visiting someone at TCH. One parking lot has signage “no construction worker parking” but guess who is there early in the morning? A truck with about four to five workers unloading their stuff. I’ve seen a couple in full western wear utilize the Pavilion valet service and walk to the metro rail to catch a ride to the rodeo. How is security to monitor and correct that issue?

    1. Angela Hudson says:

      Thank you Laura for your message. Please know that Mr. Wallace, as well as the leaders in Facilities Operations who oversee employee parking and shuttle transportation are paying close attention to your questions, suggestions and requests.

      Where appropriate, someone from the Facilities team will follow up either here on the blog, with employees directly and/or there will be follow-up communications on Connect as improvements are implemented. Also, Mr. Wallace sent a note this morning responding to some of the initial questions and concerns about employee parking. You can read it here: http://www.onthemark.org/experience/thank-you-for-your-feedback-about-parking-heres-what-were-doing

      Thank you so much for taking the time to read Mr. Wallace’s blog and voice your thoughts. They are much appreciated – that’s how change happens!

      Angela J. Hudson
      Director, Corporate Communications

  24. Cassie says:

    I completely agree with providing our patients with the best care possible, but what about TCH employees who provide that care? I have been working at TCH for almost 7 years and the shuttle service has only gotten worse. The average time to get from garage 19 to Feign building is 25 minutes! I am always waiting for a shuttle to arrive either at Feign or garage 19. This forces employees, like myself, to park in another garage that is closer to ensure I arrive to work on time. Even before starting construction on the Legacy tower, there were issues with parking not being ample enough, yet we proceeded to build a new tower, but not increase parking capacity. Why wasn’t there a plan to building an additional parking garage? I drive from Katy every single day and the amount of time I spend trying to find parking and/or wait for the shuttle, I could be spending with my family.

    1. Angela Hudson says:

      Thank you Cassie for your message. Please know that Mr. Wallace, as well as the leaders in Facilities Operations who oversee employee parking and shuttle transportation are paying close attention to your questions, suggestions and requests.

      Where appropriate, someone from the Facilities team will follow up either here on the blog, with employees directly and/or there will be follow-up communications on Connect as improvements are implemented. Also, Mr. Wallace sent a note this morning responding to some of the initial questions and concerns about employee parking. You can read it here: http://www.onthemark.org/experience/thank-you-for-your-feedback-about-parking-heres-what-were-doing

      Thank you so much for taking the time to read Mr. Wallace’s blog and voice your thoughts. They are much appreciated – that’s how change happens!

      Angela J. Hudson
      Director, Corporate Communications

  25. Michelle Swick says:

    I understand and respect all the issues being brought up here; excellent conversation. I would like to add simply that I think the remote parking garage and shuttle service DO seem to work relatively well for those who commute in on-peak hours (like myself). I have personally have a reasonable experience with it, and honestly it’s better than other shuttle services I’ve used at other employers, companies, vendors, events, etc. Certainly for those who work off peak hours I can see the issue, and just reading here I have been informed on several others I never knew about! I just wanted to pop in and share that I think our options DO work well for many of us. Just a little ray of sunshine among the troubles and concerns :)

  26. late night employees says:

    There is an issue late at night with the shuttle. I often leave work at 8:15-8:25 to catch the 8:30 shuttle. I most often am waiting until 9:10 for a shuttle to come. I don’t feel safe riding the train by myself at that time of the evening. It would be nice if the shuttles could come more often at off hour shift changes as well. I am also a 25+ employee and often can’t find parking in the designated area for long term employees because people without the proper car decal are parked there. I try to get to the garage 30-45 minutes before my work start time so that I can avoid punching in late and acquiring a tardy.

    1. Laura Reynolds says:

      Thank you for your feedback. Facilities Operations leadership is working closely with TMC and the shuttle vendor to review and modify schedules needed. We are also evaluating the need to provide additional shuttles. Please call the Shuttle Hotline (42666) to provide information about your extended delays.

  27. Stacy says:

    Additionally, employees are acquiring occurrences due to the parking situation. The tardy policy here is very stringent given that Houston is a city with terrible traffic, now add the tedious parking situation here at TCH main campus… No wonder employees feel pressured to park closer. It requires leaving an hour earlier to get to work, an hour that we aren’t paid for might I add. Just come at 640ish to see the panicked faces making a mad dash to the clock in the morning.

    1. Laura Reynolds says:

      Thank you for your feedback, Stacy. Facilities Operations leadership is evaluating the shuttle schedules and making modifications to improve services. Please report future concerns to the Shuttle Hotline (42666) and provide the approximate time of your arrival and your wait time.

  28. Late night shuttles says:

    Due to the time that it takes to get a shuttle I tend to walk to and from west tower every fair-weather day. It’s usually faster (and far less bumpy, especially if you have had back problems). Unfortunately, when you get off of work after 11pm, most people find it safer to sit and wait the extra 25 minutes until a shuttle comes. Could we at least get better lighting at the Feign shuttle bench?

    1. Laura Reynolds says:

      Thank you for your feedback regarding lighting at the Feigin Center shuttle stop. We will see what improvements can be made.

  29. RN says:

    Parking at garage 19 has become quite cumbersome and honestly unsafe at times. Most recently entry gates to the garage have not been functioning causing extremely long wait times to get out of the garage. This usually involves contacting a TMC employee who comes out and tries to trouble shoot the problem. They should just raise the gate to let people out who have been waiting a long amount of time. The process of riding the shuttle already adds a significant amount of time to your work day so when equipment continues to not function properly this is very frustrating.

    To address the unsafe practice of some of the drivers…I have actually been injured on a shuttle due to an unsafe driver who completely took out a curb while driving at a high speed. I have seen drivers check their phones and not pay attention to what they are doing. This is not ok. You are asking me to put my life in the hands of a complete stranger. This is why I have paid to park in garages that are approved for parking.

    I also see many buses parked along the back road where the apartment building is not in service when there are people who need to get to work. I have seen buses just go by without stopping to wait for people to get on. They should be stopping for a short period of time to wait.

    There are many issues with the shuttle services and it seems to go unnoticed or as if no one cares. We need to improve this process or find a better solution for employees.

    1. Laura Reynolds says:

      Thank you for your feedback. We will address your shuttle concerns with TMC and shuttle service company. Please report any future issues to the Shuttle hotline (42666) and provide the shuttle number and approximate time of the incident. We have also addressed the equipment issues with TMC.

  30. D. White says:

    Mr. Wallace, I am very appreciative of the free parking TCH supplies for its employees. It does not go unnoticed that this is a tremendous perk.

    I would like to address an issue I have noticed. At peak times, there are lots of people trying to get on the busses and it is chaos.People push to the front of the line who have just arrived and those who are trying to get on the bus in an orderly manner are left on the curb due to the bus being full. This is happening both in the morning and in the evening. There needs to be some sort of line put in place, like in a bank or amusement park, where employees line up to get on the bus to avoid confrontation.

  31. Dave says:

    How about encouraging other forms of transit. It is sad that a facility the size of Texas Children’s does nothing to support bike commuters other than bike racks. Companies far smaller include locker rooms and the like to help reduce traffic congestion and promote employee health.

    In fact if you google “texas children’s and bicycles” you get the following article:
    “Jake Kushner is Chief of Pediatric Diabetes and Endocrinology at Texas Children’s Hospital and he bikes to work daily along the Braeswood Bayou to the Texas Medical Center, a 3 miles commute. Jake has been biking to work and school almost his entire adult life.

    “In 2011 I moved to Houston and realized that this city is perfect for biking. The flat geography and expanding bike path network are wonderful assets for the Houston cycling movement.

    “The summer heat is a bit tricky. I have found that it helps to shower before I ride and to dress in clean cotton exercise clothes for example: shorts and a t-shirt. My work clothes are neatly folded in my backpack.

    “I would love to have a closet, locker room, and dry cleaning service at work so I can leave my work clothes at work. And if the city could provide more safe paths to get into the Texas Medical Center it would be even better. I know many colleagues who would be thrilled to ride from Upper Richmond, the Heights, Memorial, Montrose district, etc. We need better bike paths to promote bike riding.”

    1. PJ says:

      Right On Dave! The only reason I don’t bike to work is the lack of lockers and showers on site.
      May through September is a difficult time to bike without showers at your destination.

      Well TCH, what about truly accommodating those willing to bike and free up parking?

  32. Pamala says:

    I agree with Katrina’s comment. I also work at WC. One day a week which I believe is Thursday’s, the WC parking lot is very crowded. As I travel through the parking lot, I have had to wait for someone to leave so that I can park my vehicle. I do feel grateful to not have to pay for parking. We are very fortunate. I have friends who have to pay for parking on their jobs as well as purchase gas to get to work each day. This becomes very costly. A suggestion would be to have a designated parking space on a monthly basis for a West Campus employee. For those who may want to participate could enter their name in a drawing. An agreed fee (example $5.00) could be paid to enter the drawing and whoever wins would park in this convenient space for 1 month. A sign with this persons first name and last initial would be added to the sign. This money could be used to go toward United Way or another worthy cause. This would be a great way to raise money for the cause and give relieve the employee of looking for a parking space each day for one month! Exciting!! .

  33. Keisha Logan says:

    Can night shift have Pavilion and CCC privileges thru out the week and weekend? We are out of there by 8am and that will truly relieve the stress of the employees and free up so much space for our parents and their families. Night shift will not be in the way of others because of our hours. Both of those garages are so empty at night and its almost like a slap in the face to see. Here we are making our blood pressure rise trying to fit into an overcrowded garage 1 and 2 with the rest of the Medical Center, and we see our very own garages under our buildings empty. The patients deserve for us to have a great attitude not a forced one because of the parking headache we encounter everyday. And the line to get into the parking can be so stress when one of the lanes are down and the line to get into the garages are backed up on Holcomb and Fannin.. Fridays and Saturdays when we can park in the CCC building is the only day I am not stressed and upset about parking my car. Please consider giving privileges to night shift ALL the time in the Pavilion and the CCC

    1. Laura Reynolds says:

      Thank you for your feedback, Keisha. After-hours employees who work in the Pavilion currently have access to Garage 21 on weekdays and weekends, while after-hours employees who work in buildings other than the Pavilion currently have access to park in Wallace Tower/Garage 16 on weekends from Friday, 6 pm – Monday, 8 am. The cut off time for entering Garage 16 is 4 pm. We are evaluating the impact of extending after-hours access on patient/visitor parking. While the garages may have additional capacity in the evenings, the spaces fill up very quickly on weekday mornings when the patients begin arriving for their appointments.

  34. R. Sanders says:

    Just wondering if we are taking into consideration how many new employees have come on board and are coming on board with the new legacy tower opening up. I work nights but had to come during the day for a workshop. I went to every floor in garage 19 and once I got to the top there was only one spot. Are we running out of parking for employees? This may be why spaces are running out.

    1. Laura Reynolds says:

      TCH employees who have access to Garage 19 can park in the garage, the Meyer North Lot adjacent to the garage, and the Meyer South Lot which is on Greenbriar directly across from the Metro rail stop. There is ample capacity in this lot, and many employees prefer to ride the rail to the Medical Center.

  35. Rick says:

    This may have been addressed and I missed it but I do the park-n-ride. On weekends and holidays there is no place for us to park without paying. I was told P-n-R’ers can’t have two privileges over garage users. This just isn’t true. Garage users have two options, their primary parking or their secondary for off hours. Park-n-Ride only has the one. Can not one of the garages, say the new Baylor Clinic TCH purchased have card readers installed capable of reading the Metro pass for Park-n-Rider?

  36. RLM says:

    I have made numerous complaints to the shuttle service in my five years here at TCH. I have witnessed talking on cell phones, driving without shoes, eating, road rage, cursing…. I can name much more. To me, this shuttle service is unsafe. Due to erratic driving, I’ve seen employees get hurt. Personally, I’ve been walking to my seat and the bus took off quickly making me have to grab hold of a seat or person as I’m walking so that I don’t fall. I witness this weekly with others as well. The shuttle service is highly disorganized in the mornings, often without the buses labeled making every person have to ask where the shuttle is going. If I get here at Meyer at 0615, I’m likely not to be able to get here to clock in on time still, making me tardy. I’m glad some light is being shed into this problem. I don’t feel that it is fair that my 12.5 hr day at work is made much longer due to the shuttle services.

    1. Laura Reynolds says:

      Thank you for your feedback, RLM. We will address your concerns with TMC and the shuttle services company. Please report future issues to the Shuttle Hotline (42666) and provide the shuttle # and the approximate time of the incident so we can address these issues immediately.

  37. RN says:

    I work night shift in the west tower and I usually park in Garage 2 on weekdays and the CCC on weekends. I have such an issue with Garage 2 on the weekdays. Most of the time one of the entrances or exits on both sides aren’t working which makes traffic back up horribly. I’ve been late several times because it has taken me 30+ minutes to try to get to a parking spot. Also, I’ve run into the problem of exits being closed off due to the gate not working as I am leaving and I have sat in exit traffic for 45 minutes. Because of the increased wait time, I have been unable to leave the garage by 0800 and have had to pay a full $12. It’s getting to the point where my only other option is to start parking at the Meyer building and take the shuttle which is incredible inconvenient with the issues the shuttles have been having with wait times. It’s almost equivalent to the times with garage 2. I have also been told that other people are having the same issues with garage 1.

  38. CP says:

    When I started working here 5 years ago, the shuttle system was amazing. We had the tour bus style and they left on the dot every 5 minutes. Now there are huge crowds of employees waiting on shuttles and it is causing major stress due to late arrivals. Sometimes you wait over 10 minutes for a shuttle to arrive and then they sit for too long without a driver. I think more people would park in garage 19 if there was a major change here.

  39. Toni says:

    Motorcycle/Scooter parking is available, but not in TCH garages. Can some of the already blocked (Yellow Lined) areas of these garages be dedicated to motorcycle/scooter parking? It may only save a space or two per day, but every little bit counts!

  40. Keisha Logan says:

    Today I wish Mr. Wallace was here to see exactly what it is we go thru. Both entrance on both sides of the garage were down to one and the lines to get into the garage were backed all the way up and on to the street. Parents are not the only ones having trouble parking. Everyone was late and this is with coming to work early.

  41. Employee52051 says:

    Since we are expanding and trying to accomodate more families (and staff), is it possible to come up with more parking spots? A suggestion is to temporarily close the parking lot across the pavilion (8$ parking lot) and turn it into a several story parking garage? This will create extra parking spots for the patients and visitors and will solve the problem that we are having while bringing in extra money from the extra parking spots.

  42. Mae says:

    I have been to other work areas and so far TCH has the most generous parking privileges so far. Some hospital’s shuttle are provided by the Metro shuttle and they had to pay at least $10 per pay check .They do not have air-conditioned waiting areas, they only have the side streets where the shuttle will be waiting. Our problem is the system in which the busses are running. There has to be a specific and CONSISTENT time in which the busses has to leave the drop off areas and garage 19.. Sometimes the busses leave early or sometimes they wait for a few minutes even though they are already late. This ruins the schedule and makes the departure and arrival times inconsistent. If we need a clock placed in Garage 19 to do this then we probably have to.On some occasions, we also notice inconsiderate owners whose car occupy 2 spots in the parking garage. There has to be a penalty for this rude practice . And while in the bus, I hope people will be kind enough to occupy just one seat and to occupy the side seats first to facilitate easier occupancy ,minimize delay and maximize the number of employees that can be accommodated. These might sound trivial but this adds up to something significant when practiced by many.

  43. SMP says:

    The parking at West Campus is becoming increasingly worse. Employees are told they are only allowed to park in certain areas, yet the construction workers working on the new urgent care are parked by the front door to the EC. The physicians are allowed to park near the front door to the EC. The security guard who drives around making sure employees are parking at the furthest spots in the parking lot are parking their personal vehicles by the front door to the EC. It seems that the rules need to be applied to ALL employees. Not just nursing and ancillary staff.

  44. Evening shift 3pm-11pm says:

    I speak for many on the evening/mid shift. We arrive at Garage 19 thirty minutes before our scheduled shift. Drive all the way to the roof, only to find there are no spaces left with all the new employees. We are then forced to decide if we should drive all the way back down to level 1, and (A) go park across the street in the lot across the street from Garage 19 and the rail or (B) just drive and pay to park in TCH visitor parking. Option A means when we get to our car at 11:30pm, we have to leave the brightly lit secure garage and walk in the dark to the parking lot across the street from the lightrail which no one feels safe doing. The employees who get off at 2,3, and 6pm during the daylight have access to the garage, but we’re left to park where its dark by the time we get off? Secondly, after all this time has past, we’ll sure be late as we now have to rely on the shuttle to be on time. Option B is the only option that is safe and will still get us to work on time. The issues with the shuttle still haven’t been addressed and the issues with limited parking sure havent.

  45. ED says:

    To whom it may concern,

    When this article was first published and everyone spoke their mind, there was a significant change in the shuttle system. They left on time and there weren’t many delays. Unfortunately, as time has progressed, the shuttle service seems to be getting back on its old habit.

    There really needs to be a set time frame as to what time the shuttles leave Garage 19. The whole saying of, “the shuttles leave every 4 minutes or sooner if they are full,” is not true. The shuttles leave whenever the dispatcher FEELS like it’s time to go. They are leaving about every 7+ minutes, instead of the 4, and then if people are coming out of the elevator, the dispatcher decides to hold off the buses so they can accommodate for those people coming out of the elevator. It may sound mean, but the buses should not wait for those people. If it is time to go, it is time to go, because those extra 3+ minutes not only cause a delay on leaving time, but also on getting stuck behind the rail light, on getting red lights, and traffic time.

    We already leave early enough to accommodate for traffic from our home to Garage 19, plus the time it takes the shuttle to get to the hospital. I am lucky to have my travel time adjust to 45minutes or so in the morning, but there are times when 45 minutes aren’t enough on a commute that should really only take me 25 minutes.

    Yes, I am thankful to TCH for being so generous with our parking, but being late to work because of the system itself, is not a good thing, and this is the reason why some employees end up parking closer to the hospital- to avoid those tardies.

    I think a possible solution would be to have more shuttles run in the morning so that they REALLY can leave every 4 minutes and to also enact on the fact that when it’s time to go to, IT’S TIME TO GO.

  46. ASR II says:

    Being from the Woodlands campus we have been blessed with free parking and the patients that arrive here are super excited that it is. We have a lot of happy people and lots of available parking which makes it a real dream

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