Car jockeys come to town


Jackson Bush (left) and Cris Hrabar ‘at the ready’ for Open Door Valet

Two problems solved with one pop-up business — where can townies can park at the eatery nexus near Hoagie Haven, and where can tourists can park downtown?. Douglas English founded the Philadelphia-based Open Door Valet in 20o9 and Chris Hrabar (above right) joined him a year later. His car parkers serve such restaurants as the Peacock Inn and Eno Terra and he opened this freestanding location of Open Door Valet in mid June.

Park your car yourself across from the Ivy Inn (the parking lot behind 245 Nassau Street) and pay $5. (What? no more snitching a parking place to pick up a Number One?) Valet park at Hinds Plaza and it costs you $15, $10 on a slow night like July 2 when two stones-throw-away garages had lots of space.

Even better deal: Park it yourself, go pub hopping or people watching, and “text-2-retrieve,” they will pick you up wherever you happen to be. Tips? (“They usually give us a $20 bill and say keep the change.”

A townie inside tip: Ivy Inn couldn’t get permission to expand because it didn’t have enough parking. Will paid parking get the town fathers/mothers to reconsider?

Valet services: definitely not for townies. We parked behind 185 Nassau (free on weekends). And we walked.

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