Monday, December 06, 2004

Parking in Beirut

Good morning Lebanon!!!

It was Saturday night, and I decided to meet my friend in downtown Beirut for a beer.
Around 11:00pm, I got there and headed straight to the secondary parking knowing that the first one would already be full. However, they guy in charge told me there was no place... So I went back to the first parking hoping to get lucky... A big road block was put on the entrance signaling the lack of spaces.
After doing a couple of turns, I went back to the secondary parking, and made a deal with the guardian. I paid him the 1750L.L. fee and told him I was going to wait inside the parking for someone to leave. Next thing I know, I was head to head with a "valet parking" guy waiting for a car to leave. I was there first, and there was no way I was going to give it up for him. Luckily, the guardian saw us before I could unleash my anger and told him to leave it for me. It took me around 15 minutes to reach Beirut from my house, and around 25 minutes to actually park my car.
Giving the car to a "valet parking" is something I will never do... You won't either if you ever see how they drive....
In less than one year, when a couple of new restaurants or pubs will open, I bet that parking in downtown Beirut will become a major headache.

Even worse, I went last night to the Abraj center to watch a movie. A year ago, free parking spaces were created under the nearby bridge. But to my surprise, it was closed yesterday. Looks like the center's owners managed to convince the municipality to close it so visitors will pay to use their own parking.
What about Bliss street? Try to find a parking in the AUB area around 10:00am. It is just impossible...

I also heard there was a plan to install parking meters on roadsides all-over the Greater Beirut area.

Well Lebanon, looks like we're going to start walking again. I already have a monthly budget for paying my car parking fees, but looks like the shortage in supply and boom in demand is going to cost us extra dollars in the near future.


Anonymous said...

It sounds like city engineers were trying to utilize the max for property with a total disregard for parking now and in the FUTURE!!!!
What poor planing.

Anonymous said...

Yes parking in lebanon is ridiculous but at least all the parking stations are EXTREMELY inexpensive! I remember paying less than 1000LL for a spot.. You should visit Sydney and THEN complain about paying... You'd be lucky to pay a nightly flat rate of about AUS$14 which is close to 14000LL..
I remember freaking out at the way people parked their cars on Bliss at random times during the day..It shocked me, yet in my mind contributed to the character of the street..

Anonymous said...

Hey, instead of complaining about parking lots and car accidents, guys you need to know one fact. That is Lebanon, and according to latest statistics, it has the highest number of purchasing cars/year. Not the US, not Canada, not Brazil. It's LEBANON!
So IF YOU REALLY WANNA SOLVE THE PROBLEM, INSTEAD OF CRITICIZING, YOU BETTER HAVE AWARNESS CAMPAINGS advising ppl to limit their budget. Although I dare to ask where do the Lebanese ppl get their fortune from; we’re talking about minimum wage barely $200!!!!
I mean come on, Lebanon is a small country, so figure that out, and have a nice walk, instead of using CARS. Why do you do that if you’re in NY!
Lebanishki way has to end!
Be fair, Lebanon is our country, so please have a broader perspective! For heavens sakes!!!

P.s. Encourage transportation awareness instead of beauty awareness!

Sarah J.

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