Monday, June 30, 2008

Bexley, Ohio. WCRX-LP producer Christopher Geldis reviews and critiques Bexley East Main Street parking lots.


Monday June 23, 2008. WCRX-LP producer Christopher Geldis and his East Main Parking Lot review of Bexley Post Office.

As many of us who have lived in Bexley a number of years can attest, finding a suitable parking space along East Main Street can often be a troubling, trying, or downright offensive experience. So, responsible journalist that I am, I hopped on my bicycle last night and began to investigate. Listeners, as a disembodied voice and caring friend, I must caution you that what I you are about to hear may cause you to doubt your fondest memories and most fundamental beliefs relating to parking spaces.

Today on the East Main Street Parking Lot Review, we consider what many Bexley residents call the most poorly devised lot in our city, that of the Bexley Post Office. There is not a single positive aspect of this lot that isn’t also negative. First, although its asphalt is debris free and well preserved, one can’t help thinking this more a consequence of having eliminated all vegetation on the lot, rather than any pride Office managers might have in their lot. This is a desolate land.

Second, although parking spaces are angled for a more efficient use of space, the effect is more than negated by the ridiculously wide two-way lane that functions as both lot entrance and exit (this, of course is a problem of itself, since this entrance/exit is positioned before perhaps the busiest street in Bexley, East Main. I can imagine as many as four cars could fit side by side in this lane and, with every visit, patrons must suffer this concrete wasteland not once, but twice when buying stamps.

Finally, despite a generous number of seventy spaces at the Post Office Lot (only two of which are handicapped, giving it one of the lowest handicapped to non-handicapped ratios in our city), despite offering so many spaces, more than half are located in the forgotten realm of far back of the lot. This is back behind the dropboxes and it is here where the distance to the office door is about an eight of a mile and the lines distinguishing spaces are sometimes invisible.

My concluding judgment of the Bexley Post Office lot can be summarized with the phrase: “a black could to every silver lining.” I cannot imagine a more feebly devised lot in our city. That’s my report. This is Chris Geldis for the East Main Parking Lot Review wishing you safe travel and good port.


Tuesday June 24, 2008. WCRX-LP producer Christopher Geldis and his East Main Parking Lot review of Bexley Square.

Today, on our show, I investigate the Bexley Square lot, which serves patrons of the Bexley Monk, David Franklin Ltd, Cosi, Curves, the Bexley Copy Shop, SPCA Grande, and the Pilates Studio. Let’s cut to the chase.

I was delighted to find all ninety-three spaces clearly marked and angled to conserve space. Handicapped space representation was just above three percent, which is typical and, although the asphalt was old and sometimes cracked, my overall impression was that it was well preserved. These are the good things about the Bexley Square lot.

I was shocked and horrified, however, when it came time to consider the placement of specially designated signs on the lot. Of the ninety-three spaces, nineteen are designated as either twenty-minuet, or one-hour only spaces. Why the need for both twenty and sixty minuet demarcations?

What’s more, the Bexley Square Lot employs a looped one-way lane that both enters and exits, to and from, perhaps the busiest street in Bexley, East Main. The twenty and sixty minuet time-limited spaces were positioned at the front of the lot, which would makes sense if traffic moved two ways, since it would allow speedy patrons a speedy exit. However, being a one-way loop, all customers most circumnavigate the entire lot before leaving. This means half of the time-limited spaces (which one presumes are those most entered and exited) are positioned at the most perilous place to enter and exit a parking space: at the entrance of the lot, where drivers are just arriving on the scene and haven’t had time to survey their situation.

Also, one of the three handicapped spaces is inexcusably located in the far back of the lot, about fifteen yards from the nearest door (the Bexley Monk).

My concluding judgment of the Bexley Square lot can be summarized as a good space that could be made better by rearranging and reconsidering a few signs. That’s my report. This is Chris Geldis for the East Main Parking Lot Review wishing you safe travel and good port.


Wednesday June 25, 2008. WCRX-LP producer Christopher Geldis and his East Main Parking Lot review of Bexley Library.

As part of our ongoing commitment to the concerns that greatest effect our listeners, we at WCRX bring you exclusive coverage of this WCRX Special Segment: “The East Main Parking Lot Review.” Broadcasting live from the WCRX Studio, I’m your host, Christopher Geldis.

Up for review today is the lot of a venerable institution emblematic the values most esteemed among Bexley residents; these values include charity, education, and taste and listeners will find each of these is manifested in the Bexley Library. But is the library lot a worthy match for this adored athenaeum? Or will a lame lot tarnish this otherwise ideal symbol of our city?

Let’s start with the numbers: the lot includes fifty-two spaces, mostly angled for efficient use of space; of these, eight are designated “small car only” and two are reserved handicap. These are good numbers and although the library lot has at times been over-crowed, we may forgive this when we consider the freeloading that undoubtedly occurs when patrons of parking-deficient businesses like Cup-O-Joe’s parasitize the Library lot. This situation is only likely to deteriorate in time given a lot-less synagogue is currently being constructed next door to the library (the justification for this being that worshipers are prohibited driving to Shabbat services and will not need parking). To summarize, the lot’s capacity is inadequate, but justifiably so. (Editor's note: inspection of the south side of the synagogue's construction lot looks like there is a parking area under construction so this comment might be based on speculation.)

As for the eight “small car only” spaces, I’m impressed with the library’s support of environmentally conscientious drivers. There is a place for economy cars at the Bexley Library.

The general condition of the lot is also quite good: what little debris there is -two or three twigs and a bit of mulch- is the inevitable consequence of the wonderful vegetation seamlessly incorporated throughout the lot. The asphalt has few cracks and the lines dividing spaces are clearly visible.

Finally, the lot’s entrance and two exits are very well planned; they do not subject patrons to the immediate demands of our busy Main Street and even accommodate drivers of varying dispositions by offering a choice regarding their means of departure: for instance, more cautious and patient drivers might prefer the assurance of a traffic light, while risk-takers might opt to take their chances against traffic and exit by stop sign.

To conclude, the library lot is perhaps as much a symbol of Bexley as the library itself. It reflects charity, social responsibility, and good planning. I can think of no better monument to our library than its parking lot. That’s my report. This is Chris Geldis for the East Main Parking Lot Review wishing you safe travel and good port.


Thursday June 26, 2008. WCRX-LP producer Christopher Geldis and his East Main Parking Lot review of Drexel Theatres & Radio Café.

Time, now, for our WCRX exclusive segment: The East Main Parking Lot Review. I’m your host (Prince of Parking Lots!) Christopher Geldis.

As our most faithful listeners already know, our previous investigations have included the lots of the Bexley Library, which was judged favorably, the Bexley Post Office, which was judged unfavorably, and The Bexley Square, which earned a tepid review. Today, we direct the tremendous analytical prowess of our investigators to the back parking lot shared by the Radio Café, Drexel Theatres, Gesseppi’s Restaurant, and several other fine businesses.

I’d like to begin by stating that I admire this parking lot as one among a courageous few servicing a part of Main Street that is evidently hostile to the lined asphalt we drivers so appreciate. With few exceptions, there are no other spaces in the area so gracious as those of the Drexel Lot. Whereas other spaces threaten towing and impose upon drivers ridged demands such as “one hour parking only” or “parking only after 5:00 PM,” the Drexel Lot asks only that “parkers be patrons” and pitch in what little they might to the Drexel, Radio Café, or other enterprises funding the Lot’s courageous cause.

And judging from the well-maintained asphalt, clearly marked parking spaces, and virtually debris-free spaces, the money of a lot-minded customer unlikely to miss its mark when spent at one of these most respectable establishments.

This having been said, there are only twelve spaces at the Drexel Lot. Two of these are handicap reserved and although this gives the lot by far the highest handicapped to non-handicapped ratio of any we’ve seen (a typical lot, for instance, offers about 3% handicapped spaces, while the Drexel Lot offers about 17%) –although this is certainly admirable- what is less-than-admirable is the positioning of these handicapped spaces next to a dumpster as from the doors of Main Street businesses as any spaces on the property. This could be better planned.

But there is reason to hope, ladies and gentlemen. Good planning can is also be seen at The Drexel Lot when we consider the space-conserving angle of parking spaces and sensibly situated lot entrance-exit route that opens to Drexel Avenue, rather than the busier Main Street.

To conclude, the Drexel Parking Lot reminds me a lot of a hero from the Elizabethan poet, Edmund Spensor’s epic poem, The Faerie Queen. Like Redcrosse Knight, the Drexel Parking Lot is generally good, but suffers a “fatal flaw,” or hamartia. In The Faerie Queen, Redcrosse Knight is able to overcome his flaw under the guidance of his future wife, Una, whereupon he achieves a kind of apotheosis of virtue. I expect the same might be done for the Drexel Parking Lot if only some worthy, Una-like character would step down in Deus Ex Machina fashion and reposition the handicapped signs to the front of the lot. Until then, I consider the Drexel Lot about even with that of the Bexley Square and between the extreme good of the Bexley Library and the extreme bad of the Bexley Post Office. That’s my report. This is Chris Geldis for the East Main Parking Lot Review wishing you safe travel and good port.


Friday June 27, 2008. WCRX-LP producer Christopher Geldis and East Main Parking Lot review of Aladdin’s Eatery & Connell’s Flowers.

Time, now, for our WCRX exclusive segment: The East Main Parking Lot Review. I’m your host (Prince of Parking Lots!) Christopher Geldis.

Thus far, on this show, we’ve subjected to our analytical gaze only the parking lots of the oldest and most established of Bexley institutions such as those of the Bexley Monk, Drexel, Post Office, and Library. We restrained ourselves because we wouldn’t want to loose a devastating critique upon a business just as it’s being welcomed into our Bexley community (to do so would defy our sense of decorum here at the Parking Lot Review). However, the time has come for many of these lots to be judged and today, ladies and gentleman, the hammer falls.

Between Grinders and Cup-o-Joe, is a new parking lot servicing patrons of the National Land Advisory Group, $1.75 Cleaners, Aladdin’s Eatery, and Connell’s Flowers. The lot consists of eighteen spaces, one of which is a very roomy, very well-situated handicapped space. In fact, I have yet to find a space better reflecting respect and consideration for our handicapped in Bexley.

The lot could be designed to supply customers with more spaces (for example, the lines dividing spaces are unangled and excessively spread). However, it does not. This is typical of new parking lots, which are informed by modern marketing techniques that privilege convenience over utility. The unharried customer is more likely to stick around, come again, and spend, spend, spend –so the business model goes. We at the Parking Lot Review impulsively wretch at anything encouraging consumption in a country afflicted by an appetite so notorious as ours. But we must concede that the choice between convenience and utility relies largely upon one’s opinion and perhaps politics. Therefore we withhold our judgment in this regard and find the Aladdin’s Parking lot well planned for its purpose.

As for the condition of the lot, despite its newness, we found an excessive accumulation of debris and noticed that the demarcation lines between spaces are already due for fresh paint. The asphalt remains in a good state but, if these examples of mismanagement are any indication, the cracks destined to appear with time will be long neglected before any remedial action is taken. Until then, we of the parking lot community can only wait and hope against our doubts.

As a final point, we must recognize that parking situation at neighboring Cup-o-Joe has dramatically improved since the construction of the Aladdin’s lot. The Alladin’s lot contributes entrances and exits connected both at the building’s fore (opening to Main Street) and aft (opening to an alleyway). These conveniences are generously made accessible to Cup-o-Joe customers via a connective strip of asphalt conjoining the two lots. We hope Cup-o-Joe patrons will take the time to thank representatives of the National Land Advisory Group, $1.75 Cleaners, Connell’s Flowers, or Aladdin’s Eatery the next time they buy a cup of coffee. After all, this new lot stands to gain nothing by being associated with that other lot.

To conclude, the Aladdin’s Lot is some fresh, new asphalt representing fresh, new ideas. It may be a little indulgent and unkempt, but such is the nature of youth and, for the time being, we may overlook these offenses when we consider the generosity this lot has shown its wanting neighbor. This is a Bexley-worthy lot. That’s my report. This is Chris Geldis for the East Main Parking Lot Review wishing you safe travel and good port.


bonobo said...

It should probably be mentioned that "the most poorly devised lot in our city" is not, technically, actually in our city... The 'Bexley' Post Office is located well past the border into Columbus...

WCRX-LP Editorial collective said...

You're right.

The USPS Bexley post office is not within the Bexley municipal borders.

The WCRX-LP editorial collective is comprised of people who are mostly "open border" advocates generally and so they aren't bothered by that detail.

Similarly, the radio station staff are seldom formalists when it comes to delineating the limits of Bexley. Staff uses concepts such skill, excellence, comfort, beauty and pleasure as elements of defining the Bexley community boudaries.

Thanks for comment.

WCRX-LP 102.1 FM

bonobo said...

You're very welcome. Just to further clear things up...
Is it the skill, the excellence, the comfort, the beauty, or the pleasure associated with the Post Office parking lot that naturally places it within the informal, conceptual Bexley? From your review, I would have thought you'd be happy to let C-Bus have it.

WCRX-LP Editorial collective said...

Good point. The Bexley post office stands out like a sore thumb which is why it receives the criticism.

Do you remember the S. Drexel Avenue post office. Art Access is the current occupant of that building.

Now that was a Bexley post office.

It had a couple parking spaces in front and in the rear.