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Valet Video: Cones & Sign in Bike Lane

October 21, 2006 Midtown, Parking, Valet Parking 10 Comments

The valets were out in full force tonight: Central West End, Midtown, Washington Avenue, Downtown, Lafayette Square. In the CWE they had cones running around the new fountain on Maryland Plaza — some event or new venue in the courtyard space behind Design Within Reach (the new rooftop place?). Cones also blocked off various empty spaces on both sides of the street. Also across the street and to the east were more cones and a sign at Bar Italia. And a few doors east of there cones blocked spaces for Sub Zero on Euclid. I didn’t stop.

I did, however, stop at Dante’s on Olive just west of Compton. Here the valet company was taking numerous spaces but the real offense was the placement of their valet sign and cones within the bike lane. Cyclists, especially those doing so at night have many things to worry about (such as drunk drivers) they don’t need to have an obstacle course placed in their path.

Here is short video (under a minute):

I actually talked to the very courteous and professional valets as well as a patron of the bar that said he was a buddy of the owner. The valets, as I said, were professional. The owner’s buddy couldn’t believe I cared about this issue and was razzing me but in the end we actually had a series of conversations that were very pleasant. He was really funny too, great sense of humor. While I was there I noticed many people arriving, most on foot (presumably not wanting to pay $5 to park when they could just walk a block). The crowd was really diverse in age and appearance which made me think this might be a cool place to hang out some evening.

Just a block east on the south side of Olive ‘The Loft’ also had a sign in the middle of the bike lane. All the usual suspects downtown had cones out although many on Washington Ave no longer had them on the street. Over on Locust Ten14 had cones everywhere around 11:15pm. They had a long line to get in the door, not sure if folks who valet get preference for entrance or if you valet then wait in line. The new place downtown, Dolce, had cones on two blocks of Broadway and adjacent to the new Marquette lofts.

Aldermen are now looking into this issue and hopefully will come up with a workable ordinance in the next month or so.


Currently there are "10 comments" on this Article:

  1. Jim Zavist says:

    They don’t need to block off 5-6-7 spaces UNLESS they plan on parking cars in them – they only need 2 or 3 if they have an off-street lot.

    As for cones in the bike lane, I’m sure they were thinking that they sure didn’t want to damage their patron’s cars or make it any harder to use the designated “landing strip”! 😉

  2. Nice to hear progress is being made.

  3. equals42 says:

    Glad to hear everyone was professional and courteous this time. I don’t get down that way very often anymore since I moved out of my Washington Loft, but any improvement is bound to help ALL the businesses in those areas.

  4. biker chick says:

    We were riding downtown one night & accidentally knocked over the sign in the bike lane at the Loft – really didn’t mean too, but they knock over pretty easily. I guess the message didn’t stick… sigh.

  5. Jeff Jackson says:

    If I was riding in a marked “bike lane” I would probably ride into the sign just tp prove a point… Or maybe just do a shoulder check and go around and then kick it over…”oops”. I think they forget that the streets are for everyone and not just 2 ton vehicles. I hope something is done about them (signs) soon!

    Keep Cycling!

  6. velo says:


    Coming home Friday night – from a different part of the city than downtown – we were heading west on Olive – AND – valet parking signs completely blocking the bike lane in front of Dante’s/Seven – whatever it’s called. It was around midnight & we’d just past a cyclist in the lane – he was yet unaware that his lane would soon be blocked.

    You might want to have another chat with the owners there.

  7. velo says:

    dang- sorry for the typo’s in the previous email (past = passed and missing a word somewhere!)

  8. John says:

    Steve your utter lack of regard for you fellow man’s safety amazes me. If you leave 2 spaces for the valets to exchange 100 cars and then you leave the other spaces in front and behind them open to the public what do you think is going to happen? Any guess? TRAFFIC AND ACCIDENTS!!!!!!!!!!

    [UrbanReviewSTL — Funny how all over the country and even in Clayton they manage to park cars without the doom and gloom you predict.  Yes, things are so unique in St. Louis — thanks for clearing that up!]

  9. the number one valet says:

    this message is for “steve”. do you have a job? is this how you spend your time? going around ALL OVER the city to harass
    valet parkers on weekend nights? remember this—someone like me parks your ride in the city and IM THE GUY that makes
    damn sure it doesn’t get broken into. also, i’d like to think that you have an education. most the valets (and me) do this
    part time for cash while in school. did you have a job in college? or were you making a mockery of the hard-working people
    that did? please send a comment back…i need an answer. if you could forward this to lyda krewson also. i went to
    elementary school with her children, some feedback from her would be great.

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