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Jul 10, 2013 04:07 AM

North Loop Lunch & Parking

A friend wanted to meet at Smack Shack for lunch yesterday. We both gave up after five or six circuits driving around a 3-4 block radius looking for parking. Where do you park for lunch at a north loop restaurant?

I suppose we could have gone to Monte Carlo, they have their own lot.

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    1. Weird. I've driven to lunch at Be'Wiched a million times and never had any issues finding parking within a block (albeit across the street sometimes). Heck, I frequently drag my 72 year-old Dad there (sending him all the way from Farmington) and never even thought that he'd have to walk more than a block.

      On the other end of the block, the area of Runyon's/One on One Bike/Haute Dish the meters are almost always empty over lunch hour unless there's a Twins day game. That's a regular walk for me over the lunch hour.

      I think you may have had bad luck or hit some sort of event that filled up the meters. I'd say give it another shot.

      1. I've had the same experience - a late lunch at Smack Shack on a Tuesday. No special events going on. I eventually parked illegally and just got takeout.

        1. OK...never wanting to be wrong....ERRR....I mean....wanting to be helpful....I took a small detour on my lunchtime walk.

          Granted it was 11:30-11:45, but it was a sea of empty meter spots, so maybe your best bet is to ensure you're there before noon. The two spots right at the door of Smack Shack were open, as was the entire block to the west. I also wanted to scope out pay lots for you -- there is one across the street from Deja Vu (1.5 blocks).

          Also, it looks like the block east of there and across Washington (alongside Sapor) is a good bet. There was one car parked on the entire block of about 30 spots at 11:45. 50 yards from Smack Shack.

          Maybe it's different after noon...your mileage may vary.

          1. As a North Loop resident, the advice I always give friends is to try a block or two off Washington toward the river. That generally seems to work. My guess is that you had bad luck. Usually you can find something unless the Twins are playing.

            There's also a pay ramp across from Clubhouse Jager, although I don't know if it's open parking or contract.

            2 Replies
            1. re: epmaddy

              I am looking for a recommendation for a lot or ramp that is not "monthly contract only."

              1. re: JimGrinsfelder

                Fair enough. Wasn't sure if that was the case, but thanks for letting me know.

                The only other nearby ramp that I know of, that is not connected to an apartment/condo building, is the one just down the street from Darby's, near where the Interchange is going in. That's about 3 blocks from Smack Shack, but again, may be contract only. I just know it's not connected to housing.

                There really isn't much in terms of surface parking lots until you get closer to downtown (starting around 3rd). There is a lot across from Acme Comedy Club, but it tends to be full with workers during the day.

                Best bet tends to be street parking, but availability definitely does vary.