The 8 Worst Places to Park in St. Louis

Categories: Community, Lists

stlparkinglot111.JPG
Flickr/JerameyJannene
If there is a hell, it probably looks like a parking lot.
It's no secret that St. Louis has car problems. On one hand, many drivers here are schmucks who ignore turning lanes and treat pedestrians like Mario Kart powerups. This summer, however, it's parking infrastructure that's put city officials and Fair St. Louis organizers into a panic.

The construction of the new Gateway Arch grounds has already forced Fair St. Louis to relocate to Forest Park, and last month the city announced that all street parking in Forest Park would be completely closed during the festival (July 3-5). As for the city itself, the treasurer's office is hiring an outside consultant to sort out of the mess of meters and parking downtown.

So in preparation for what could be the most parking-afflicted summer in recent memory, we present the eight worst places to park in St. Louis city and county. (If you've got your own list of horrible parking spots, let us know in the comments section.)

See also: St. Louis Has the 8th Worst Potholes in the U.S.

forestpark222.jpg
Forest Park Forever
1. Forest Park
As mentioned above, the city's decision to block off all the free street parking in Forest Park has thrown Fair St. Louis into a scramble. Festival spokeswoman Julie Hauser says a comprehensive parking plan will be released soon, but we can't imagine anything that can avert the imminent parking massacre for Forest Park's tens of thousands of visitors this Independence Day weekend.

To be clear, we're not saying that it's normally a joy to park at the art museum or the zoo: The winding roads with bumper-to-bumper traffic and filled-to-capacity parking lots can turn any weekend-afternoon outing into an endless journey of torture. Not only does it royally suck, but chances are you have a screaming child in tow to make the experience all the more awful.

2. Brentwood Promenade
Another parking nightmare, the Brentwood Promenade contains a handful of family-friendly stores like Target, Trader Joe's and Bed Bath & Beyond. Weekday shoppers can find a bounty of open parking spaces, but as the weekend arrives it becomes hell on earth. No amount of cheap Target flatware is worth the pain of navigating the madness of the Promenade's continent-sized parking lot on a Saturday. Our advice? Order some pizza and let someone else risk vehicular hippie-slaughter for a bag of organic Tuscan kale from Trader Joe's.

Continue for more terrible places to park.



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93 comments
Chrystylyn Hanks
Chrystylyn Hanks

It isn't St. Louis but if you ever have to park at Mercy Hospital in Creve Coeur, just pay for the valet.

Rebekah Wedick
Rebekah Wedick

Totally agree with the STLCO courthouse. Ridiculous.

Jeremy Brooks
Jeremy Brooks

"This isn't Mario Kart, people" No, and generating new content isn't rocket science.

Ben Stewart
Ben Stewart

If you didn't expect to park 3 ft from the front door of any of these places, you should be fine. Park one metrolink stop away, park on the street, walk for 5 minutes, ride your bike, pay a terrifying $7 parking lot fee. It's probably the easiest city in the world to go where you want.

Jon Simons
Jon Simons

St. Louis loves a good ol' article on parking.

Denise Hestand
Denise Hestand

They left off the chaos of the Schnucks parking lot at Big Bend and Clayton, can I get a hells yeah for that maddening asshole magnet?!?

Phil Adams
Phil Adams

OMG did the world stop again? RFT couldnt find anything to write about today,this is a recycled story from last summer

Vince Laskowski
Vince Laskowski

Hmmm.... I'm wondering how the rft is going to spin this into a racial issue tomorrow....

Scott Tyler
Scott Tyler

Meh, you can park at any meter downtown all day for a $10 fine....works out great during the post season when everyone jacks their rates up to $30.

Dave Dunn
Dave Dunn

The problem is people in the midwest cant drive

Jennifer O'Neal
Jennifer O'Neal

That parking lot on Tucker that's pictured in the article has got to be the creepiest ever

Darlene Meyer Yurkins
Darlene Meyer Yurkins

true. in NYC, parking per hour costs about the same as the day rate in STL. street parking is a very lucky find and still leaves you with a good walk. either way, you are never sure your car will be the same when you get back to it - which also goes here.

Darlene Meyer Yurkins
Darlene Meyer Yurkins

heheheh! it's like those giant SUVs just spend the day prowling the lot looking for a fender bender to get into or a pedestrian to hit as the drivers yell/text into their smartphones: "There's a sale at Bed, Bath, and Beyoooooond!"

Kimberly Fach
Kimberly Fach

It's called expanding metro link and stop the parking nightmare for good!

Brian Wade
Brian Wade

BRENTWOOD PROMENADE!!! Its Like Suburban Deathmatch 2015 on their lot!!!

Adam C Gabor
Adam C Gabor

Cardinals parking isn't that bad if you know where to park. There's a couple $5-$10 lots that have you facing Broadway and makes for a quick exit

Daniel Joseph
Daniel Joseph

This is literally one of the worst articles I've ever seen you guys do, "creepy garages"?? Nice try

AJ Wilkes
AJ Wilkes

The worst places for drivers are those that are the best places for pedestrians, bicyclists, and user of public transportation. Funny how that works out.

Brooks Maxwell
Brooks Maxwell

This article is about 4th of July weekend, 2014. Forest Park can not be the worst place. Try harder RFT.

David Biernbaum
David Biernbaum

I agree with all of the "places" listed but isn't this the same problem enjoyed by every city in the U.S.? I think so. Parking is a LOT worse in many other cities than it is here.

Karen Hall
Karen Hall

That`s not what yall said last month about stl driver!lol

Andy Crossett
Andy Crossett

The worse place to park is anywhere where the thugs decide to break into multiple cars in one area! Car clotting.

Alex Francis
Alex Francis

Parking for the Dome is the worse. My buddy and I went to a Rams game and parked probably in that garage, we went up the stairs when leaving and each level had a homeless person sleeping on the stairs the whole way up.

egolterman
egolterman topcommenter

The best place to park and it's free is the MUNY. 4 big concerts over 4th of July weekend would draw 40,000 paid, easily 10,000 from out of town for one or two nights stays. That would be perhaps an appropriate way to celebrate St. Louis at 250 in Forest Park at night, and all the normal daytime attractions operate during the day.  And the nighttime traffic in the Park was kept very much controlled when Bi State then METRO offered express bus service to MUNY. But that was killed a decade ago when Harvey Harris, an owner of the Fox was a METRO commissioner. Not been restored as Grand Center President Vince Schoemehl took his place' on METRO's board. The chaos in Forest Park this Fourth of July is a tribute to power and control.

t.danneman
t.danneman

Can't find a spot to park in the city? Stay in the county, we won't miss you.

JamesMadison
JamesMadison

I added the cardinals schedule to my calendar simply to know when NOT to go downtown. More recently, I learned that any event downtown means no parking, so I avoid downtown as much as possible.

Christopher Schmidt
Christopher Schmidt

I would use Metrolink if someone would rent a brain and build it out to deep southwest St. Louis County but no one has thought of where to find the money to extend it out and to south county too.

Adam Woodson
Adam Woodson

But most trips don't require the transporting of guitar amps. For those that do, use a vehicle (of course).

Susie Nicholson
Susie Nicholson

Hahaha, this is hilarious to Angelenos!!! I come to St. Louis every year and wonder where the cars are. And where the valets are. And where the meters are. My cousin got a ticket last year for an expired meter. It was $10. In L.A. it's $65.

Angelo Olegna
Angelo Olegna

People need to understand that our car-centric culture is not tenable. There isn't enough room for every single person to drive a car to everywhere they want to go at all times. We have to choose between a vibrant street life or a city made of parking lots. There is no way to ever satisfy parking desires. Everyone wants to park close to where they want to be (a total impossibility) and everyone expects enough parking at all times no matter what the conditions. Saint Louis actually has better traffic and better parking conditions compared to most other major cities. But people still complain and complain if they have to walk more than a few feet from their car to their destination. Get out of your car, live near where you usually need to go, use mass transit, use your feet, use a bike, and quit whining constantly about parking conditions that are as good as they're ever going to get without demolishing half the city for your precious Volvo.

mbloodworth8
mbloodworth8

The fact that "Washington Avenue on a weekend evening" isn't on this list is crazy.  I mean, unless you park within one block of the strip, you're in a warzone.  That should be #1, let alone in the top 8.

Bob Chekoudjian
Bob Chekoudjian

All the more reason for expanding comprehensive public transportation. If we get even 50% of the folks to take an alternate means of getting to one of these events, then guy like Gerald and myself, who need to haul gear to one of these events, can do so more practically. And if I were just attending, man, would I love to just be able to hop on light rail from a centralized parking area/garage, get in and get out without the hassle of dealing with a vehicle.

kagekarasu
kagekarasu

The metro needs to go a lot of places. If they got the money together to actually build a functioning mass transit system, the whole STL area would be better for it, there would be less of these parking issues, less accidents and people more willing to come into the city for events and vice versa.

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