And now the parking sale is a lottery too

11 MARCH 2015

I suppose it was inevitable. The Ace Parking sale - which is NOT run by CCI but is totally its own operation operated by Ace - will be a lottery.

Here's why: last year's parking sale was an epic maelstrom of horror, one that was handled badly at every turn. Let's review. First CEO Jon Gjerset promised a smoother experience due to his partnering up with AWS. The actual sale crashed, although a few people got parking; after trying to resurrect it a few more times that day, Ace said the sale would go live the following morning. But some wily attendees (are there any other kind at this point?) kept poking at the system and successfully got in that night and started buying up spots. So when other attendees woke up and tried to get in, as advised, almost everything was gone. In the meantime, other people were charged multiple times for 1 spot, other people who had gotten a reservation confirmation later found out they didn't have a reservation after all, checking accounts were overdrawn, a petition was started - it was a spectacular mess.

So now Ace is doing a lottery.

How to register: send an email to and you're in their system. On 12 April, they'll hold a drawing. Lots will be filled in this order:

  • Convention Center
  • Hilton Garage
  • Petco Lots (except campus lot which will be closed)
  • Padres Parkade
  • Diamond View Tower
  • Horton Plaza
  • Gaslamp City Square

If you're picked, you'll be notified by 15 April and told how to pay for your spot.

Observations I feel obligated to make:

  • It's one entry per email address, which means people are going to be creating or using fake email accounts up the wazoo.
  • There are far fewer parking spots available this year, due to the loss of part of the Petco lot - more than 500. Ace omits the actual number but I thought you should know it.
  • Anyone can participate in this; you don't need a badge. So you're competing with every random person who wants to come down and enjoy the sights.

All in all, it's good to be aware you have other transportation options; be aware of other parking options as well, like Parkopedia. Which isn't to discourage you from the sale - go ahead and throw your hat in the ring. Just be prepared to make alternate plans in case you're not that lucky.

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