As I drove around Southern California on Friday there was a sense that we were back to normal traffic wise. Interstate 15 north out of San Diego was jammed with what I would call the usual Friday night chaos. The surface streets in West Los Angeles that morning were slowed to a crawl.
Something is going on in our building near LAX. I am running into people in the elevator, in the lobby, in the men’s room, everywhere. The valets that had be placed on ‘hold’ for the past three months are back to work in our ‘valet only’ visitor parking area. When I went to dinner on Saturday at a local restaurant, there was a line outside waiting to get in (and four valets on duty.) Lunch on Thursday was back to normal (once I went back to the car for a mask I had forgotten.)
On the ground (or in the air) reports from colleagues flying note that planes are full, and in two cases, the ‘empty middle seat’ wasn’t empty anywhere on the plane. Although shops at LAX are closed, DFW was open for business and people were enjoying their time between planes, if you can, in fact, enjoy times between planes.
I headed back to my periodic visit to the doctor today and found that his office has not closed at all during the ‘shutdown.’ Robyn went to the stylist and got four inches trimmed off her hair. Life is being pulled kicking and screaming back to normal.
I have had reports from consumable suppliers to the parking industry that orders are beginning to come in again and shipments are on their way. All those cars on I15 have to have somewhere to park.
We aren’t back to normal, but I stand by my prediction that summer will be a “great reopening” and we will be back to a ‘near normal’ by fall.
It will take certain segments a tad longer to recover. Airport parking will reflect just how long it takes people to get back to flying. But it will be aided by those who elect to drive rather than take Uber/Lyft or public transportation. Companies supporting venues will see their numbers down until sports and concert activity picks up, but it will.
I have no numbers, no facts I can back up with surveys, but l do believe my eyes. They haven’t failed me yet. That great economic engine that is America is on the rebound. And parking is coming along with it.