Everything worked out well except the parking. This time I came from Hwy 288, exiting at W. Bellfort St. and traveling west. I turned into the first entrance past Knight St around 2:30 pm and had to turn around because it was roped off. Literally roped off with an old rope, no signs, cones, etc. Oh well. I backed out and went to the main entrance and was shocked to see that parking was going to be $10. Cash. I asked the “attendant” (homeless dude equipped with orange vest?) what the deal was and he told me it was rodeo time. Great.
So I enter and find a parking spot, number 638 – there were more cars than the last time I rode the choo choo. Curiously, half the parking lot was roped off.
Why would METRO raise the price by $7 and then cut the capacity in half?
Interesting strategy. In the short time I was in the line entering the lot, two cars drove away because of the high price. That caused me to ask myself if maybe METRO was losing an opportunity here. After I rode the choo choo for the first time, I determined that it was a good deal for me. Parking was reasonable, the trains were clean and on time. Which is precisely the reason I was back for the second time. What if all these people attending the rodeo had the same positive experience? Might they too be inclined to ride it again? As Tom Bazan noted, METRO ridership continues to decline – why not use these events to boost ridership instead of trying to get a little more revenue? And the revenue increases aren’t all that great anyway – standard revenue is $3 a car and no extra personnel cost, plus the revenue is protected via an ATM like machine. The “event” rate of $10 sounds like a lot of extra revenue until you see a dozen homeless looking dudes with orange vests on walking around with wads of cash. I dunno, but I’d guess that some of that cash didn’t make it home, if you know what I mean.
And one more thing. I thought it was a “Park and Ride” facility. After looking at this picture, I learn that it is a “Parking ride”. Is that like a roller coaster that stands still?