The result are the chopping carts strewn all over the parking lot, and the issue is that it one less parking space you can use until the carts are placed back into their designated areas, but the problem is in the hundreds of customers who are too lazy to take their carts back to the staging area so they can be collected. I can only compare beautiful Terrace to the Lower Mainland of British Columbia, so my sample group is very small, but nonetheless, I believe there is a trend here.
There is a stark contrast between the two areas that I have shopped at between the customers, the workers, and environment. For the customers, I call this the “level of aptitude,” as the main difference, in general terms. And to be honest, I know that there are differences in the structure of the Northern facility, as compared to the Southern ones, so I am taking the availability of labour into account. So mainly it is the customers’ attitude that I believe is the focus of this issue. There are signs posted in numerous locations, and the drop-off sites are numerous also, so there are plenty of opportunities for customers to deposit their carts at these locations. One would believe that abandon carts in the middle of parking stalls would be few and in-between. Sadly this is not case.
But between the Terrace and the Lower Mainland areas, the environmental differences are huge. Apart from the weather, there are a quarter of a million people in the Langley Township area alone, compared to Terrace, with just twelve thousand inhabitance. One would be lead to believe that the level of deviance would be higher in the Lower Mainland: no it is not. My experience, having lived there for Twenty-five years, has been that customers embraced returning their carts, and of course there are a handful of holdouts–it is not perfect. Here on the North Coast, the non-returned carts are numerous, significant higher. I call this the “high level of apathy,” among shoppers here in the Skeena Valley. For the newly arrived customer, this posses a problem of finding a parking spot that is not inhabited with an abandon shopping buggy, here in Terrace.
Maybe the answer is in applying more shopping cart return sites in the parking lot. I would suggest policing it, but that would be a huge cost to the proprietor who operates this facility. In large part, I believe the answer lays in education, perhaps a more rigorous level of enlightenment, geared towards the customer with incentives, could be created. Something like coin returns on the buggies? Money is a great motivator, why not use it.