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ARIA's Other Green Park

By JohnH on Monday, 10th May 2010 3:59pm
  » filed under Las Vegas  comments: 13


Boys and girls, it's time to add another item to the list of disappointments that is Aria.

Yes, in addition to the less than stellar service, questionable design elements - making people walk outside to get from the parking garage to the casino - and proliferation of art by the hack that is and always will be Julian Schnabel, we can all now welcome this sign into that group.

ARIA hybrid parking

However, before I explain why this sign is such an utter disappointment, let's first explore why it's at Aria in the first place. See, MGM had to include these signs on almost every floor - in very prominent and desirable parking areas, no less - of its parking structure in order to gain as many points as possible for its highly sought after and even more highly promoted LEED certification. The goal of it all is to promote sustainable living practices, and the sign serves to give certain incentives to those who have purchased a hybrid and are living in a sustainable fashion.

All of that is fine and dandy, but let me show you what I saw one Saturday morning during my stay at Aria a few weeks ago.

ARIA hybrid parking

You see that? Unless GM designed, manufactured, and promoted a hybrid version of its Hummer before they shuttered the brand - HA! - that ugly ass vehicle should be nowhere near that spot. In fact, with MGM's hard-on for sustainability, that thing should be forced to park in the farthest corner of Aria's monstrous parking structure. And yet, there it is; front and center.

Now, some of you might be saying, "But John, it's just one SUV. And I bet MGM's parking structure security goons tried to contact that guy and make him move it." Well, allow me to retort. There are no security goons. There are no people threatening to tow the car. All you have is a bunch of people parking their Hummers, Nissan Xterras, and various other gas-guzzling cars in spaces that are clearly marked for hybrid and low emission vehicles.

As a side note, I should make full disclosure of the fact that I do drive a Prius when I go to Vegas - I use less than twelve gallons of gas round trip; it's fantastic - and therefore have a reason to be a little more than miffed about all of this. But there's more to it than my own selfish interest. It's the fact that MGM, which has made such a show of all of this green crap, can't even reasonably implement or enforce a key element of their LEED certification. And you can't say that it's impossible to monitor who parks in the reserved spaces. My local Fresh and Easy has implemented the same program and has never had a single problem with people parking where they shouldn't be parking. It's just MGM and it's just Aria. But more to the point, it's just frustrating.

Tagged: city center   green   aria   


Comments & Discussion:

How long does it take you go get that Prius to Vegas? I'd figure it would take about 2.7 hours to get from Baker to Primm with that underpowered engine. :P

Gov. Arnold drives a specially built hybrid Hummer, so it is possible. I thought they were going to have plugs for charging electric cars in these slots? It doesn't look like they have even painted green lines (ala blue handicapped spots) to clearly indicate their purpose. Obviously, once MGM got their LEED cert there was no follow-up.

They've got these at Fresh and Easy too, even though "families with children" can park closer. Haven't seen that one at Aria yet.

We had to put those at a LEED development we opened in last year. It's very hard to patrol and is really more of an honor system thing now. To enforce it we would likely end up being confrontational with our guests which is never good in the customer service industry. I think eventually these spots may be more respected but for right now belligerent SUV owners will continue to park there. Just my 2 cents.

CM: It takes us just about the same amount of time to make the drive. Although, the engine doesn't quite let me get up to 88 and go back in time to attend the Bellagio opening...

Donnymac: I know enforcement is nearly impossible, but it's just a generally frustrating situation.

LEED certification? That's so 2008. Nevada has gone from Obama blue state to giving Harry Reid a wedgie. The next casino to open will have special poolside parking suites for Hummers.

Although the Hummer is a ridiculous vehicle for "around town", I think the real reason you are miffed is because you drive a Prius and your testicles seem to crawl up into your stomach each time you get near the vehicle ;)

With a 63% occupancy rate so far, MGM is probably too worried about driving away that customer to consider towing his car.

Also, do Flex Fuel vehicles qualify for using those spots? I believe I read they have Flex Fuel Hummers that can use E85 fuel, so I would suppose they would qualify as an "alternative fuel" vehicle.

Ah, the endless struggle between arrogant douchebaggery and preachy do-goodery.
Who to root for? Tough call, tough call.

In this case, though, I think the dickhead should've parked among the unenlightened. It is an honor system, show some honor.

are these legally enforceable though?

Julian Schnabel is a total hack. Thank you so much for saying that. Yrs., Richard

Just spent 3 days in a corner suite at Aria. Service was not good, staff did not smile or even say hello. Room supervisor walked into our room while the privacy sign was on (wife was changing) and the marble floors in the bathroom were stained and never cleaned (looked like the previous guests missed around the toilet). We are now at Encore for 3 days. Encore is much, much better.

Great example. We arrive 2 hours before check-in at both places (Aria and Encore). At the Aria, the check-in person said "your room is not available, you will have to come back at 3 and get back in line." That was it. At the Encore, the check-in person said "your room is not available, we will take care of everything now and call you when the room is ready -- then just stop back in the key pickup spot". Encore worked like a charm, they even held our luggage.

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