"Sheer Greed" is how one person described the price bump for parking at ipayOne Center's Slayer show on July 20. In the past, parking has cost $10 per car; Slayer fans paid $15.
Through Arena Group 2000, general manager Ernie Hahn leases out the Sports Arena to independent promoters. Viejas Entertainment and Soma promoted the nearly sold-out Slayer show. In addition to rent, which is paid by promoters, Arena Group 2000 collects a $3.50-per-person facility fee for each ticket sold. The group splits parking fees with Ace Parking.
According to Hahn, there was a "misunderstanding" over the price increase. ("Slayer should have been $10," he says.) However, the cost of parking will increase to $15 for all upcoming "major concert events," including the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Mariah Carey, and American Idol shows. Hahn says the $10 parking fee will remain for lower-priced general-admission concerts by metal and alternative artists. For example, the recent Avenged Sevenfold and Taste of Chaos Tour would fall into the $10-per-car rate.
Hahn says the price increase is "consistent with similar venues in markets this size." Three L.A. concert venues charge the following minimum rates for parking: $25 at the Inglewood Forum, $15 at the Staples Center, and $12 at Anaheim Pond.
One music-industry insider suggests that the Sports Arena will up the rates "because they can.... They lost the Gulls because they went bankrupt. [The ipayOne Center is] having financial problems. Their way to get more income is to penalize the public who do come to the Sports Arena."
Hahn says the decline in sporting events "has nothing to do with it."
For those with tickets, parking is free at the Coors Amphitheatre and UCSD's RIMAC Arena. There is no parking fee collected at SDSU for Cox Arena or Open Air Theater shows.