Recently, I parked at Bottleworks in the lot behind the businesses. I went up to the parking box, followed the instructions and got a ticket to park. When I returned to the lot an hour and 15 minutes later, both our cars were booted. Shocked, I showed the man our ticket. He said, “You cannot eat at The Grit and park here.” With no other choice, I paid the $75 fee.
This is an unfair and unwelcome practice by the Bottleworks. If they want more business and more customers, they need to reevaluate their parking. If a lot is a paid lot, and people pay to park there, they should not find their cars booted.
The other lots in town use a mobile parking app where parking guests may pay for the time they park there. As an alternative, the Bottleworks might establish a stamp system whereby people might get their ticket stamped for free parking if they shop in the Bottleworks.
What exists now is not only unfair and unwelcoming to customers, but it is also confusing. How did the attendant know that I didn’t go to Lululemon after eating at The Grit? How did the attendant know I didn’t have a cup of coffee at Hendershot’s?
I live in Athens. But imagine a visitor experiencing such a punishment when they think they’ve done what was necessary to park in that lot. Will that visitor return to Athens? What will that person tell their friends about our community? I might add, a visitor to Athens was with me when our cars were booted. I can only imagine what she thought about our community after seeing our shock and dismay at having our cars so rudely booted.
Personally, I will avoid the Bottleworks for anything in the future.