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Old 07-07-2012, 09:18 AM   #1
seashoreCM
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Downtown Disney Parking Time Limits and Rules

This post is to solicit comments.

Suppose that a time limit system was imposed for parking at Downtown Disney.

Parking would still be free but you must move your car every (let's say five) hours.

Okay, let's tweak it so you would not have to move your car and lose your space but you would have to fetch a timed voucher from a nearby kiosk and put that inside your windshield.

You would be able to renew your parking with additional vouchers indefinitely. Because it is free there is no pressure to return to your car exactly four hours and 45 minutes later to put in a new 5 hour voucher. If it was slightly more convenient you could feel free to go put in a new voucher 3 hours later to re-up your parking time for another 5 hours from then, etc.

We could make it even easier, having kiosks throughout DTD linked together so you punch in your license plate number to re-up your parking electronically instead of returning to your car to deal with paper vouchers.

Guests who parked at DTD to go to the theme parks would in practically all cases be unable to re-up their vouchers within 5 hours and would be considered violators.
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Old 07-07-2012, 09:41 AM   #2
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The simplest (and most obvious) solution is to do something similar to DTD-Anaheim. Free parking for a short period of time, with validation for longer stays if you eat/shop/see a movie. Folks will give you all sorts of reasons why DTD-Orlando couldn't do the same thing, but somehow Pointe Orlando manages to in their parking garage---without the free period.
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Old 07-07-2012, 10:22 AM   #3
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If parking is not plentiful and free, no purchase necessary, I rarely patronize that place (a downtown, a "vertical mall" with garage, a hotel, etc.). It becomes a matter of going there only if absolutely necessary or there is a big incentive such as a major sale.

No doubt, there are others who feel the same way.

In turn merchants have to offer something extra to get people in the door. Charging for parking at DTD would change the clientele, notably a significant decrease in head count.
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Old 07-07-2012, 03:59 PM   #4
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Yes, that's usually the first reason people give for why it could never work. But as I said Pointe Orlando doesn't seem to have trouble attracting patrons.

Quote:
Charging for parking at DTD would change the clientele, notably a significant decrease in head count.
But if it decreases the looky-loos vs. the paying customers, that's perhaps not so bad for DTD.

Honestly, I don't think DTD needs to do anything in particular differently. I never have trouble finding a parking space (though I'm willing to park in the PI zone or West Side if necessary), and the elimination of the DTD-Park bus routes has probably done as much or more to curb abuse than anything else might. But, if they feel the need, there is a ready-made model that lots of other similar developments use.
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Old 07-07-2012, 05:27 PM   #5
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I think they should charge $14 for parking, but validate the ticket to make it free with an on site $14 purchase. There are too many using DT Disney as a free parking lot for other attractions.
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Old 07-07-2012, 05:36 PM   #6
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I'm kind of an impulse shopper when I go to Downtown Disney. Plus we often go to scope out the items so that we can decide what to buy but we don't necessarily buy it right then and there. For example, I might see one of the new Monopoly games or some reasonably priced art object and so on. I won't buy all of them but will come back to buy what I decide I really want.

My point is that not everyone who doesn't purchase right at that moment is just trying to get a freebie.
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Old 07-07-2012, 07:24 PM   #7
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I know that people say that the lots are clogged with those trying to avoid parking fees at the parks, but it's just not true. I have been over to DTD, and parked my car, several times, late morning. Parking has not been an issue. And I was able to find a nice close spot, right behind the Basin shop in the Marketplace. Can't get much closer than that.
It's just not an issue. Most people may try it once but when they realize what a huge time consumer it is, they don't do it again. I mean seriously??? How many people do you think are arriving there, at 8:30am, and walking to the bus stops??? The buses aren't even running all that consistently at that time..and not really until closer to 10ish. Then, you have to go to a resort and then get to the park from there. It takes way too long...just to save $14/15???

Disney could put in gates, and then charge to park there..then if your parking voucher is validated, you get free parking if it's within a set time..say 5 hrs. But, I just don't think it's that big a deal. Obviously, Disney doesn't think it's an issue. If they did? They would fix it.
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Old 07-07-2012, 10:54 PM   #8
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Ok what happens when you don't re up your ticket? Towing, ticket, nasty sign put on your windshield.

Also how big of a fleet of vehicles do you think you will need to read every single license plate?

It would probably cost half as much just to build more spots.
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Old 07-07-2012, 11:00 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brian Noble View Post


But if it decreases the looky-loos vs. the paying customers, that's perhaps not so bad for DTD.
Stores like,no need, looky-loos because they know a lot of them will buy something.
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Old 07-07-2012, 11:04 PM   #10
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Anybody who's been to Pointe Orlando knows that while it's not a ghost town it does not get the amount of visitors it could be getting if parking were free.The visitors it does get are mostly people attending conventions or staying in a hotel in the area,probably walking distance to the center.I have more examples of places that charge for parking not doing great business,down here in Miami we have another shopping/dining center very similar to Pointe Orlando called Shoppes at Sunset Place,it's located in a very popular location in South Miami.The amount of stores and restaurants that have closed there over the years is astounding,Niketown,Dan Marinos restaurant,Australian themed restaurant,Gameworks closed but was bought by local investors changing it's name to Gametime,Martini Bar,Old Navy,Margaritaville restaurant,an Imax movie theater,Casa Vida homegoods store,Virgin Megastore(Yeah they all closed),basically you walk in there most days of the week even on weekends the place is practically a ghost town.The only businesses that actually get people consistently are the 24 screen movie theater and possibly the LA Fitness gym.

My point is that like it or not,you charge to park you will lose business no matter what.DTD gets visitors from all over,people staying at Universal,locals coming to have a quick bite at Earl of Sandwich,etc...You charge extra for parking all businesses will lose out.The truth is that Disney charges a lot for rent at DTD,for businesses to consistently pay it you can't have things like charging for parking which will lower revenue,just look at House of Blues which was rumored to be moving out of DTD to a nearby location in Orlando's tourist district,you can't tell me they rather be somewhere other that DTD to get the heavy traffic,but when you take into account what it costs to be in DTD,moving is something that made them consider it.
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Old 07-08-2012, 08:17 AM   #11
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Oh, I forgot to say this one thing.....I will not go to an area where I have to pay to park...even if parking is free when validated. If I want to do that, I will go to an upscale shopping area, and valet park. But, pay to park and then just walk around? Yeah, not happening.
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Old 07-08-2012, 09:11 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seashoreCM View Post

Suppose that a time limit system was imposed for parking at Downtown Disney.

Parking would still be free but you must move your car every (let's say five) hours.
etc.
Ok I have to also add how would this work. Teams of Barney Fifes with pieces of chalk on sticks making tires.

I recall that was one of Barneys jobs. I always assumed he was marking tires with times to enforce parking time limits.
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Old 07-08-2012, 10:09 AM   #13
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Quote:
The visitors it does get are mostly people attending conventions or staying in a hotel in the area,probably walking distance to the center
Perhaps. I always drive, and the structure seems to always have plenty of traffic---though admittedly some fraction of it always seems to be people who don't understand how parking garages even work, so maybe this is everyone's else's first time!
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Old 07-08-2012, 10:44 AM   #14
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Another way of accomplishing this could be self service validation. Keep your parking voucher with prestamped entrance time with you and use conveniently located time stamping clocks. However gates and pay booths would be needed at the lot entrances.

Your voucher would need stamps showing revalidations no more than 5 hours apart to let you avoid the fee.

By the way they now make license plate recognizing camera-scanners accurate to at least 50 feet away so a parking lot monitor could just cruise the aisles.

The first words of the posted rules could be "five hour limit". Below that might be instructions such as using vouchers to extend that time.
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Old 07-08-2012, 11:03 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seashoreCM View Post
By the way they now make license plate recognizing camera-scanners accurate to at least 50 feet away so a parking lot monitor could just cruise the aisles.
Again what happens if you don't have a valid stamp? There has to be a penalty. What if you forget to get your ticket stamped because I don't know you were spending 100's of dollars at (name expensive DTD eatery). You get get it stamped or whatever 15 minutes too late but sorry we have already towed your car and you know once its on the hook you have to pay which is usually around $150.

Quote:
Originally Posted by seashoreCM View Post
Another way of accomplishing this could be self service validation. Keep your parking voucher with prestamped entrance time with you and use conveniently located time stamping clocks. However gates and pay booths would be needed at the lot entrances.

Your voucher would need stamps showing revalidations no more than 5 hours apart to let you avoid the fee.
DTD is a shopping center, as posted above the more road blocks you put in front of someone to shop there the less people will come. Brick and Mortar stores are already seeing the number of shoppers decrease as more people shop online and now you want to make it harder by putting up gates and weird validation rules.

I can see the backups at the exit gates. "Wait now what was I supposed to do to not get towed or a ticket or have to pay?". People have only just started to get "Pay before you get to your car" garages.

Here is the deal, you have suggested a very complex solution to a problem that Disney while they know they have it does't really care.
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