Downtown valet service

In today’s Bulletin: Valet service brings a bit of big city to downtown.

Bend Valet plans to begin operations Friday evening, and for $7, patrons can drop off their vehicle downtown and be done with it….

The company will operate from a kiosk at the northeast corner of Brooks Street and Oregon Avenue, directly across from the Pine Tavern.

Customers will be able to drop off their cars at the kiosk, and Bend Valet employees — identified by orange shirts and khaki pants — will then drive the cars across Newport Avenue to park them in the lot behind the old Elks Building, which now houses Randall & Thomas Furniture and Boondocks Bar and Grill [formerly Joker’s].

They plan to run from 5pm until 11pm on Fridays and Saturdays (and on special event weekends); and right now the Pine Tavern is on board, offering a $3 discount for patrons.

Overall, I’m not sure what to make of this… on one hand, it’s going to be a tough sell, but on the other hand, who knows, they might be successful. Some thoughts:

  • You can’t just "drive across Newport Avenue" from Brooks Street to go park—there’s a concrete lane divider right there on that stretch of Newport (in front of Brooks). They’ll have to go the long way around. That doesn’t sound like it helps traffic much.
  • How long before some random person puts on an orange shirt and khakis and just takes off with the car someone gives them?
  • Is this a reaction to the City backing off their plan to charge for Mirror Pond lot parking?
  • According to the article, there are "roughly 40 restaurants" downtown! I knew the number was high, but not that high.

It’s going to be interesting to see the reactions to this.

One thought on “Downtown valet service

  1. Good idea… but worst location ever. I mean, it’s hard enough getting to Brooks street (across from BBC and Pine Tavern), let alone them putting half a mile on your car just getting to the parking area.

    "Very good sir, let me just go get your car."
    (cue the orange guys running back and forth across busy Greenwood all hours of the day)
    Then he hops in your car, and spends 10 minutes trying to get the 100 yards back to Brooks.

    Plus, how many of those 40 restaurants are actually close enough to Brooks St. Valet area to make it worth it?

    Bad bad bad. This just means more traffic downtown.

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