The Park ‘N Jet airport parking lot on Sunset Highway will close by the end of the month.
The lot is no longer accepting new parking, and is going to wait out the rest of September before closing the business for good, company officials said.
The closure announcement last week came along with layoff notices to about two dozen employees, said Andrea Pierce, operations manager for Diamond Parking in Spokane.
She said the current business environment has not been favorable to their parking operation.
The Park ‘N Jet has been a fixture near the airport for decades. It currently has a number of monthly parkers who are employed by the airlines and at the airport.
Diamond acquired the property in 1979 and continued to lease it to the House of Travel as an operator for another 10 years. In 1989, Diamond Parking took over the business, said Dan Geiger, a vice president for Diamond Parking.
Until last week when new parking was stopped, the lot charged $5.99 a day for self-parking and $10.99 a day for valet parking.
Geiger said Spokane airport rates are lower than other comparable cities.
The charges came with shuttle rides to and from the terminal.
Pierce said the airport raised fees for the van service from 50 cents to $1 a trip, increasing costs to about $1,600 a month for the Park ‘N Jet.
Economy parking with a free shuttle from the north lot is $4 a day at Spokane International Airport. That price drew away customers, Pierce said.
Employees at the Park ‘N Jet on Monday said they had developed good relationships with customers over the years and many employees had numerous years with the company.
Wintertime travelers, especially older people or those with mobility issues, really appreciated the valet service, they said.
Diamond Parking plans to convert the parking lot into additional storage units, which already take up a part of the property, Pierce said.
Airport officials have said they have worked to improve parking choices, including the economy lot.
“This has resulted in a growing number of customers parking in all of our lots,” said Todd Woodard, airport spokesman.
He said parking revenue helps support airport operations, maintenance and ongoing improvements, allowing the airport to be self-sufficient.
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