Saturday, October 13, 2012

Post Office Parking

The parking lot at 400 Whitehead Street has been a bone of contention forever. The rules for the after business hours use of the lot have changed over the years and confusion has been total. For a while you could park there and then you couldn't and then they said people going to the Tropic Cinema could park in the post office lot and then they decided they couldn't and people got towed. The postmaster said it was a liability issue and that people were blocking access for legitimate after hours post office box users and on it went.
Now it is official with large signs and everything. The chair was empty so I looked around. All I could see was lots of big fat signs encouraging the unwary to park. Hmm....The thing is if you park on private property in Key West the owners can have a contract with a tow company to haul your vehicle away. The tow company calls the police department to make sure the vehicle isn't stolen (they don't want to be in receipt of stolen property) and when we clear it they take it to their yard. The bill is hundreds of dollars. Please don't park in lots that say "Tow Away Zone." if you do and you get towed don't call the police expecting them to pull your chestnuts from the fire of your own making. Use legitmate parking.
I did find the attendant, a young Eastern European fella and I had him explain the rates to me, which he did with a smile after I assured him I was looking for information about car parking and not to park my (wife's) Vespa.
For regular folk it's ten dollars for all day coverage, and for Tropic Cinema members with membership cards it's three dollars. Cool. Guess what, we have Tropic membership and we used the service when we went to see The Master a rather dull take on Scientology. We had a classic Key West moment before the movie started. The manager came into the theater and asked anxiously if we were all there to see The Master. Yes we nodded like rows of bobble toys. A few got up and said no we are here to see... And they got ushered out to their respective screening rooms...Apparently someone gave the volunteer at the box office the wrong list or something got muddled and they caught it just in time. We giggled and enjoyed the moment.
When we finished strolling Duval Street we found the parking lot is being well used.
The parking lot was packed on Columbus Day and I expect it will be packed this winter. Finally this ongoing irritation of a desirable place to park and a massive source of towing anger seems to have been solved, to everyone's satisfaction.
So now we can all frolic on down to the corner of Whitehead and Eaton and find easy parking and not run the risk of getting towed. What a sensible solution all round.


9 comments:

Anonymous said...

So you are not recommended The Master? I was thinking about seeing it in the next day or two. Parking is not an issue at my neighborhood theater....

Conchscooter said...

I found it boring honestly. I'm not interested in scientology's nonsense. I did miss a well filmed motorcycle scene according to the Vintagent. Oh well, thank heaven for u-tube.

Key West Adventures said...

I volunteer at Tropic and during Bike Week there was NOWHERE to park my scooter. I parked at the bank across the street not knowing that THAT was paid parking too. When I came back after volunteering by scooter was moved behind the dumpster!
It's good to know that members can park there for $3

www.keywestadventurestoday.com

Conchscooter said...

It's a sort-of irony that parking went down the drain during bike week when motorcycles are supposed to ease parking problems. Apparently all Lower Duva was't enouh for them.

Joe said...

$300 to retrieve my Jeep from Arnold's towing on Stock Island.

Plus a ticket! Seems like if you get towed the ticket should be on the house.

Conchscooter said...

Getting towed is seriously bad news. Meters are cheap by comparison especially using the ticket machines. Hell park and ont pay for the meter and the ticket is "only" $35 ( I think ) which is a steal compared to a tow for using a private lot .

Singing to Jeffrey's Tune said...

I had an attorney tell me once that Florida is the worst place to get towed, b/c each municipality can decided the cost based several factors (vehicle size, time of day, type of vehicle, etc). However not even the tow companies know many times and kind of make up a rate. Know if your rate is fair if you get towed.

Glad to see you can now park at the PO again, it was our go to when we would stay on BPK and drive into town.

Anonymous said...

A few years ago I parked a van on fleming across from the old jail. It was just starting to get dark. After a few hours on Duval I returned to a surprise. I can warn not to park under a ant of the trees as the roosters can make a real mess. At least no towing bill.

Melissa Pemberton said...

We had permission from one attendant to park for 10 min to drop some mail after hours and use the rest room and when I got back to the car another attendant got incredibly aggressive with us and when we told him we had been there less than the 10 min that we were given he said that the tow truck had been called. He was scaring me and attacked me and strangled me... Luckily my friend was there to get him off of me and then I called the police. The mans name is Ryan Knies and when I called his boss and the owner Steve Walker he sounded incredibly uninterested that his employees were assaulting and strangling customers...... I wouldn't go near there unless you want to be attacked.