Towing Chicago-Style: Put Up A Sign After Hundreds Of Cars Have Already Parked

If you’re from Chicago and have ever parked an automobile, this has probably already happened to you 6 times and you’ll be wondering why this story is even newsworthy. Feel free to go get a sandwich. For the rest of the country… The Chicago Sun-Times is reporting that hundreds of people who drove to the 79th annual Bud Billiken Parade got a nasty surprise when they found that a towing company had posted a notice after the parade started and towed all of their cars.

Motorists, residents and store owners in the area say a tow company waited until lots near the parade route were full of cars before posting towing notices and taking vehicles. Each owner had to shell out at least $170 to Rendered Services Inc. to retrieve their cars.

Police on the scene said they’d heard many radio calls about towing from vacant lots in the area, and most involved Rendered. Police said at one point they had to stop trucks from yanking the cars because the signage was erected after the 10 a.m. start of the parade.

Fun! The towing company claims that the signs were “posted and reposted and reposted,” but a local business owner told the Sun-Times, “They just put it up no less than an hour ago.”

Sweet home, Chicago.


Tow trucks swoop in on paradegoers’ cars
[Chicago Sun-Times]
(Photo: John J. Kim/Sun-Times)

Comments

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  1. Nick1693 says:

    Wow. Thats just sad.

  2. xmarkd400x says:

    And how much of that $170 does the city get as a kickback? Lame money-grab move that benefits everyone except the citizens the government is supposed to be of, by, and for.

  3. JN2 says:

    The cops are mad because they didn’t think of it first.

  4. @xmarkd400x: I’m guessing none. It’s probably one of those “Cars towed at owners expense” things. They know the owners of the lots, and people park there, and they put up a sign. If anyone is getting a cut of it, it’s private owners. If the city was getting a cut, the police wouldn’t have stopped them. The police would have also already erected signs for the parade at the same time all the other signs on the streets were posted.

  5. Oh, Chicago towers.

    A friend of mine had a stolen car recovered when overzealous Chicago towers towed it and called her from the registration in the glove box. She was glad to get the car back, but kind-of pissed about having to pay the towing fee.

  6. P41 says:

    I’ve heard of this before. Poor victimized owners of vacant lots are tired of their signs “being taken down” and tow a bunch of people’s cars. But if it happens so often should be easy to photograph, right, and then you can vent your anger by pressing charges for vandalism, yup?

    Parade’s a one time event, but in general if people are parking somewhere, put someone there to charge them money. No need to get nasty by towing. Or you need the lot vacant in case aliens need a landing site?

    Oh wait, wink wink, then it’d be $10 a car instead of $170. Got it. Each one of those people should sue in small claims court for $5000. And coordinate trial dates for the most convenient for them to testify as each other’s witnesses, but make the tow company have to spend as many days as possible in court.

  7. tedyc03 says:

    How is this not illegal seizure (a.k.a. grand theft)?

  8. Sidecutter says:

    Wait, how is this legal? The cops stopped them from towing more cars because the signs wern’t posted until after the fact. But these people still had to pay to get their cars back? How did the towing company and it’s drivers NOT get charged with theft? And surely the police have the power to go there and enforce the matter by making them release the cars without charge and refund anyone who was already forced to pay.

  9. SharkD says:

    This happens all the time in D.C. and the surrounding suburbs.

    In fact, there’s an entire website devoted to one such towing scam:
    [www.frankstowing.com]

    Another blog devoted to DC towing scams:
    [arlingtonparking.blogspot.com]

    And, an article about a 2005 crackdown on towing scams, which hasn’t put a dent into the problem:
    [dcist.com]

  10. humphrmi says:

    That was a quick sandwich. ;-)

    This is nothing. A few years ago some of the impound lots were found selling cars for “scrap” to their family members after only 24 hours, when they were supposed to wait weeks before they scrapped cars.

    At least these people got their cars back, and for only $170.

    This is why us suburbanites don’t drive into town.

  11. SharkD says:

    @sharkd: Correction: CSI: Arlington focuses on abuses by DC-area parking enforcement, but it’s in the same ballpark.

  12. DashTheHand says:

    Reminds me of my own apartment complex. No signs posted of “unauthorized vehicles will be towed” -at all- and I wake up one morning to find my girlfriends car towed. Turns out that the office hadn’t asked the towing company to tow cars in months and apparently had decided it would be a good idea to start again for no reason. They couldn’t do anything about it other than give me a reduced next months rent, but I was forced to cough up the $250 towing fee out of my own pocket to get the car back.

  13. xmarkd400x says:

    @Git Em SteveDave displays attention-grabbing vanity: I know where I live (Springfield, MA) the towing companies put in a bid to do all city-towing. This sounds like city-towing (because of the parade). Part of the city-towing bid is kicking back some of the money to the city. Kind of like an “administrative fee”. I want to say that Springfield gets roughly $30 per $120 tow or something like that (yes, outrageous).

    I still think this is a similar instance, although I do not know the specifics of the issue at hand.

  14. I’ve had a car towed 30 miles and it cost 60 bucks.

    How in the hell does it cost 170 dollars to tow a car in town where they aren’t going very far?

    If anyone ever tried to touch my truck they’d get shot.

    Then again I have a driveway and it’s paid off.

  15. Couldn’t a person like, I don’t know, sue in small claims court or something? I know that in Arizona, towing cars is illegal unless prominent signs in both English and Spanish are posted, but I don’t know what the potential for recovery is if your car is illegally towed.

  16. weakdome says:

    Honest – if there’s one blanket of companies who deserve the worst company in America, it’s tow companies. Sorry if any of you own or work for one, but that business practice is the sleaziest thing ever.
    It burns me up when I SEE my car getting towed and they won’t let it off the truck, so I have to RUN BEHIND THE TOW TRUCK to follow it to the lot TWO BLOCKS AWAY, and then still have to pay the “MINIMUM STORAGE FEE” of $200 in Boston because my car touched down in their lot for 30 seconds. What a serious fucking crock of bullshit. I have more respect for drug dealers and pimps.

  17. theblackdog says:

    @sharkd: I was just thinking about Franks Towing. This is why I’m always afraid when I park in DC.

  18. Mollyg says:

    It amazes me how police view some theft, like illegal towing and moving companies holding stuff hostage a “civil” matter.

  19. mmstk101 says:

    @tedyc03: this is actually part of a wicked awesome advertising campaign for the new game Grand Theft Auto: Chicago

  20. taney71 says:

    I live in the DC area and use to go to a bar in Arlington VA. A towing company use to always tow cars that parked in a funeral homes’ parking lot. Kind of crazy if you ask me. Not like there are many funerals or bussiness at 11:00pm-2:00am on Saturdays.

  21. digitalgimpus says:

    I’m sure it was an accident ;-)

    I suspect this type of thing is pretty widespread. Just like fast parking meters. How the heck is can a modern digital parking meter still be so inaccurate without tampering? It’s not like the old days where they were wound up. The bulk are electronic.

  22. Mr_D says:

    To those of you asking “How can they do this?” the answer is in the title: It’s Chicago.

  23. ElvisAndretti says:

    Towing abuse is legendary in Chicago, the late, great Steve Goodman wrote a song about it called ‘The Lincoln Park Pirates’. It’s funny, if you know where you car is.

  24. bravo369 says:

    @weakdome: I could be wrong but I think i read somewhere that it’s actually a law that a tow truck must release the car if an owner shows up as long as the owner can pay a certain percentage of the towing fee on the spot. so tow trucks know that if they tow it all the way back to the lot, they’ve got you for $200 rather than $50 or so to release the car.

  25. edrebber says:

    Pay the towing charge with a credit card and then dispute the charge with your credit card company.

  26. ARP says:

    @xmarkd400x: Yes, we have city and and private tow companies, but private companies often work under contract with the city.

    Our equivalent to Franks Towing is Lincoln Towing. They are evil.

    Actually, Chicago uses this scam more for parking tickets. The city puts up temporary no parking signs for street cleaning between 8-10 p.m. the evening before, when everyone is home for the evening and parked. First thing the next morning they ticket everyone on the street. The funny thing is that they only actually clean the street 1 out of 4 times they put up the sign.

  27. Underpants Gnome says:

    @edrebber: Impound lots don’t take credit cards for this very reason. Cash only.

  28. jamar0303 says:

    And this is why I plan to go without a car as soon as I get myself into a situation when I can- no car, no tow.

  29. KlausKinsky says:

    Reminds me of Philly. There they just lie about the time when they write you the ticket and have you towed.

    I parked on the street where the sign clearly stated that parking was allowed till 7 am. I came to move the car at 6:40 am and it was gone. Called police and was notified that it was in the impound lot. Had to wait till 9am to get the ticket, pay the ticket and get the car released from impound lot. Time on the ticket? 7:15am.

  30. catland says:

    The late Chicagoan Steve Goodman wrote a song: The Lincoln Park Pirates about just such a scam. Worth looking up and listening to if you have time.

  31. SpdRacer says:

    @ElvisAndretti: It is a classic/required listening for anyone who has ever had a car towed in Chitown.

  32. timmus says:

    If one of these companies tried to pull this on me, I’d find out where that tow truck parks at 4 am and slash their tires.

  33. floraposte says:

    @ElvisAndretti: That’s actually about a specific towing service, the legendary Lincoln Towing; Mike Royko wrote about them several times, incurring at least one lawsuit (which he won).

    Rendered Services has been accused of illegal towing before: [enchantedworldofrankinbass.blogspot.com]

  34. Inglix_the_Mad says:

    One of my friends in Pharr saw a tow truck driver shot 8 times a few years back. Shouldn’t have tried towed that drug dealer’s car (illegally no less) without figuring out whom it belonged to I guess.

    One minute my friend hears some arguing outside the window of his wage slave job, peeks out the window after the shots to a bloody mess of a person (definitely closed casket) and somebody driving off.

    @Underpants Gnome:

    My personal experience shows that to be true even if you call for a tow. Glad I have a friend with a trailer truck now.

  35. Dilbitz says:

    I live a little over an hour from Chicago, and go there quite often. They are also known for mailing you parking tickets from areas you haven’t even been in. (Otherwise wouldn’t it just be on your car?)
    It’s just a lot easier to drive 20 miles to the train station and then take the Metra right into the city. Then you hop onto one of the free shuttles around the station.

  36. madfrog says:

    Sounds like to me the tow company needed some money to pay for the fuel for the tow trucks.

  37. darkryd says:

    I’ve tried to be nice in my posts and not use foul language all that much, but when it comes to towing companies…

    F*ck tow-truck drivers and their shady practices.

  38. xwildebeestx says:

    Tow truck drivers are less than human.

  39. Ubik2501 says:

    @ARP: I can back this up. More than once I’ve had to scramble to move my car first thing in the morning because the street cleaning signs went up after midnight the night before. It’s incredibly telling that all these parking ticket matters are handled by the city Department of Revenue.

    My neighborhood (Rogers Park) has had a huge glut of handicapped-only spaces designated in the last six months, and it really seems to me to be just another revenue scam. Why? There are four such spots in front of my apartment building, and I know for a fact that there are not that many disabled people living there! The parking situation is disastrous enough here, and now they have to make it even worse to squeeze blood from the stone.

    This story doesn’t surprise me in the least, but it sure gets my blood boiling after previous encounters with the nefarious Lincoln Towing Company. Sure, put up a big sign saying “PUBLIC PARKING LOT” and hide the towing sign behind two grate fences and a shrub – you’re in the clear! Or put a tiny sign three stories up on a building across from the lot! Aces! (These are both situations I’ve personally encountered.) I really, really wish Chicagoans would group together for a class action suit against their ridiculous and blatantly abusive practices, and group in the Department of Revenue for collusion. Nothing of value would be lost.

    *deep breath* Wow. Sometimes I wonder why I even own a car in this city.

  40. cordeliapotter says:

    Chicago departments don’t talk to each other and the Dept. of Streets and Sanitation is notorious for taking down legitimate, temporary signs, every 6 hours, claiming that whatever other city department issued the sign didn’t authorize it with them, so it is possible the tow company was truthful and had actually put up the signs the requisite 72 hours ahead. That does not excuse them from re-posting the signs after the cars had parked there. And I don’t honestly believe that they even thought of posting the signs before people parked there. It’s just not completely impossible.

  41. floraposte says:

    @Underpants Gnome: They did take credit cards once upon a time. About fifteen years ago, a friend of mine whose car got towed went to retrieve it, and the clerk at the lot returned card after card, saying that they were coming up void.

    It turns out she was such a poor reader that she couldn’t differentiate between the words “Void” and “Valid.”

  42. TomCruisesTesticles says:

    Life. No parole. Then we’ll see who wants to play hardball

  43. The night before the LA Marathon a few years ago, I was parked outside USC, and was there until late. I come outside, and the entire street had been cleared of cars, including mine. No signs anywhere. We followed one of the trucks the the impound lot, and they wouldn’t release my car then; I had to wait until the next morning, so I had to get driven home by my friend who lives nowhere near me.

    The next day, after waiting for the marathon to clear up, I got my car back from the lot. They waived the impound fee because, you know, there was no warning about this, and they acted like they were doing me a huge favor. I wanted to punch them in the balls.

  44. theshocker says:

    I parked in Pilsen. No signs posted.

    Returned from a weekend away sans a car — they towed it and claimed signs were up. They weren’t.

    …Then…

    I got about five tickets for parking in a bus stop – even though the signs were removed due to construction. Nothing but bolts in the ground.

    Signs, signs, everywhere a sign…that Chicago is broke, and our taxes are the highest in the country. Thanks.

  45. jackal676 says:

    @xwildebeestx: What about the ones who come get your car when it breaks down on the highway? A portion of workers in every occupation under the sun are scumbags, but that’s no reason to condemn the whole lot.

  46. Hmmm … I wonder if you could pay with a Credit Card, and then initiate a Chargeback

  47. Ubik2501 says:

    @TakingItSeriously: Addressed above. None of them take credit cards anymore, presumably partially for this reason. They’re scammers who want your money, plain and simple.

    jackal676 is correct that people like highway towers perform a necessary duty, but the guys who just impound your car and ask you for cash are, invariably, the worst scum of the earth.

  48. scoosdad says:

    @darkryd: Ah, towing companies… good time to pull this one out of the archives:

    [www.telegram.com]

    Involves a load of lobsters in a crashed truck, one local towing company, and enough emergency responders to tie up the road for 12 hours.

  49. Greasy Thumb Guzik says:

    @ARP:
    @Ubik2501:

    I call bullshit on da boat uh yuse!
    I live in Rogers Park & they always put the signs up early the day before & sometimes 2 days before street sweeping.
    Do you actually believe city workers are out late at night putting up street sweeping signs?
    HA!
    Those lazy assholes from Streets & San don’t do shit shit after 3PM unless they’re on overtime.
    Just watch all the garbage trucks pull into the garage on Ravenswood at 2:30 every afternoon. Their “work” day is done!

    What may be happening is that the signs were put up in the morning & ripped off by kids or other vandals soon after & someone on the block put them back up.
    I’ve done that on my block [near Sullivan HS] & so have my neighbors.

  50. Ubik2501 says:

    @Greasy Thumb Guzik: I never said they always put the signs up late – they’re normally good about putting them up days in advance. However, I have seen at least a few instances in the last year where signs were not up at all until between 8PM and midnight the evening before. Whether this is due to error, shadiness or unruly kids is unknown, but it does happen.

  51. Ubik2501 says:

    @Greasy Thumb Guzik: I never said they always put them up late – in fact, they’re normally good about putting up the street cleaning signs a few days in advance. But I’ve seen at least half a dozen instances over the last year where signs were not up at all (meaning signs were not taken down and replaced later) until 9PM or later the evening before street cleaning. Whether this is due to error, shadiness or unruly teenagers is unknown, but it does happen.

  52. AgentTuttle says:

    I’d have reported my car stolen.

  53. superqueen23 says:

    @taney71: That lot at least has signs saying that you can’t park there. I wouldn’t be suprised if there are some insurance issues involved when people are parking on your property. Although it would be much nicer than searching for street parking or going to one of the parking garages in that area.
    And I’m sure that my friend who was towed from there (or maybe it was the IHOP lot) would appreciate some more parking options

  54. If you have ever been stuck in downtown Chicago right as rush hour is starting, there is nothing as beautiful as the line of tow trucks lined up to start clearing the curb lanes of illegally parked cars. No zipping in and out of lanes because some idiot forgot to move the family minivan. I wish some other cities would consider doing the same (DC? Seattle?? Anyone listening???).

    And who drives to a parade in Chicago? that is what the train is for!

  55. shufflemoomin says:

    @xmarkd400x: Somebody tows the whole city around? Man, that’d be some parade…

  56. Breach says:

    Quite a dick move!

  57. Quilt says:

    Some people like to create their own opportunities.

  58. mikey07840 says:

    Wow. I feel lucky about NYC. When I parked last in the village during a day where there was a parade, the city decided to tow all the cars on the street where I parked and move them. I called the police and they told us where all the cars were towed to. (A few blocks away on the street.)

  59. tinmanx says:

    Here in NYC they just give tickets for blocking street cleaning. The street sweeper just goes around the parked cars, problem solved and a big chunk of change earned. Why give a private company a cut when the city can keep it all?

  60. P_Smith says:

    Nothing has changed in 80 years, has it? The mayor’s office is still up to the same old tricks (in the sense of a paid whore, I mean).

    Rendered Services Inc.? Renditioned is more like it.

  61. Greasy Thumb Guzik says:

    @Ubik2501:
    First you wrote between 8PM & midnite & the 2 minutes later it’s 9PM or later.
    Which is it?
    Streets & San doesn’t put street sweeping signs up that late, ever! The signs are put up by someone from the ward office & they’re all gone by 4:30!
    You just didn’t see them or one of your neighbors, not me in this instance put them all back up.
    And believe me, I’ve seen people park right in front of the sign on a Monday afternoon, telling them no parking Tuesday & then come out swearing they never saw the sign they parked in front of 16 hours earlier.

  62. Difdi says:

    @weakdome:

    It burns me up when I SEE my car getting towed and they won’t let it off the truck

    In a lot of places, it’s illegal to tow an occupied car. To the point the tow truck driver legally has to unhook your car if you jump into it before he drives off with it. This is not a recommended act, since a pissed off tow truck driver is no joke. You’d have to check on local laws, but in extreme cases, it can work.

  63. TorrentFreak says:

    Something like this happened in San Antonio. I was going to a rock concert and everyone was told the lot to park in was for the Civic Center where it was at. There were no signs except the ones that say Concert parking Here.

    Lo and behold when we got out of the concert several hundred cars had been towed.

    I had to pay #350 to get back my car.

    The ‘mysterious’ vandalism at that impound lot for several weeks following the concert remains a mystery.

  64. Ubik2501 says:

    @Greasy Thumb Guzik: Are we really going to argue semantics here? All I did was retype a post I thought had gotten eaten and used the wrong number. I’m sticking with 8PM here.

    I distinctly recall more than once coming home from work at 7PM or later, with no signs anywhere in my area (several blocks from the train to my apartment), no signs present any time I was in the neighborhood earlier, and no signs of tampering. Then, either later in the evening or early the next day, the signs were up all over the neighborhood, some of them for exactly that morning.

    I am not one of those people who deliberately misconstrues where and when the signs went up because I got a ticket. I have to park on the street because I don’t have a garage or a lot space, and am very diligent about looking out for street cleaning signs, notices, etc. concerning where I can and can’t park. They tend to make them big and bright enough that they can’t be missed anyway. All I’m saying is that, whatever the cause, I’ve seen this happen before.

  65. Ubik2501 says:

    Entirely non-Chicago topic: This sort of thing happened in my old college town in Indiana as well. I was paying for a parking spot near my dorm, near the construction site for a new school building. One night I went to my car to go grocery shopping, and lo and behold, not a car was there. They had, without notice, changed the parking lot to construction crew only, ticketed every student parking there, and towed them to another lot without any sort of notification except for being billed through the mail. And I was paying for that damn spot. They refused to refund me for anything when I disputed it, too. That sort of thing is just heinously unethical.

  66. snickle77 says:

    This story is typical. When I lived in Chicago they’d post up random street cleaning signs less than 24hrs in advance and never on the same day or time. If you used public transportation during the week, you’d be in for a nasty surprise on the weekend when returning to your car if you parked on the street. Each ticket is $60. Three unpaid tickes = a boot. Not doing anything about the boot in 24hrs = car goes to the pound. ($150 towing fee plus $10 per day for storage.) If your car is in the pound more than 15days, they will crush your car. BTW, when your car is at said pound, they will jack your car open and drive it around the lot.

  67. drjayphd says:

    I’d just emailed the site about another parking issue in Hartford about a month ago. Long story short, I went to park in a lot that was quite clearly supposed to be open, but unattended. As my experience had always been that the lot was free if that happened, I parked and went on my way. So imagine my surprise (and a bunch of other drunks) to find out that everyone had been towed. Good luck getting a ride at 2 AM, because (naturally) they towed all the cars to Berlin (probably a good 20-25 minutes away), so the mileage fee was almost as much as the towing fee. At least I was able to scrape together the $130.

    In the future, though, I recommend anyone forced to pay unjust parking fines heed the advice of the Upright Citizens Brigade… ass pennies.

  68. ElijahDProphet says:

    Not surprised at all. I was in Chicago for Lollapalooza and the garage under Millennium Park had a sign posted that Special Event Parking was $25. After the show when we went to pay the automated kiosk the sign had changed to $30. The next morning it was back to $25.

    That is a shady town where parking enforcement is concerned.

  69. Corbin123 says:

    @AgentTuttle: If you call the police and report your car stolen they will just tell you what impound lot it is at. The police will NEVER help you, even if your car was towed 100% illegally. You will have to take them to court if you want your money/car back.

  70. TheShepherd says:

    I don’t know about Chicago, but in Boston there are laws about the signage and how for special events and such that it has to be up x amount of days/hours BEFORE the event

  71. @Greasy Thumb Guzik: I don’t get it. Here on the west coast street sweeping is on a fixed schedule and every street subject to it has permanent signs posted “No parking X AM to Y AM WEDNESDAY, etc.

    Do they just do them randomly where you guys live and have to put up temporary signs each time??

  72. forgottenpassword says:

    lol tow companies… scumbags the lot of them!

    I remember a local newsstory here where towtruck operators were collecting cars broken down on the side of the highway & then selling them for scrap at autowreckers. Imagine breaking down on the highway , leaving to get help, coming back to find your car gone & never knowing what happened to it. That some POS towtrucdriver snatched it up & sold it for a couple hundred bucks to an autowrecker & its now just a big cube of compressed metal.

  73. chartrule says:

    illegal towing should be the same as grand theft auto

  74. vastrightwing says:

    Am I the only one who’s taking this seriously?

  75. ARP says:

    @West Coast Secessionist: Some streets are fixed. Others are not. They’re trying to put in a system where there’s a flashing red light on the signs during times its a bad idea to park there. Of course, none of the signs are working.

    @Greasy Thumb Guzik: I’ll vouch for my buddy @Ubik2501: that its happend in every neighborhood I’ve lived in. So, its happened in Logan Square, Bucktown, Wicker Park, East Village, Noble Square, and Lakeview (12 year Chicago resident). And no, the kids didn’t rip them down. 8p.m. the night before, no signs. 8 a.m. the next day, plenty of signs. Are you suggesting people take down the signs and put them back up. Even punk kids are too lazy to do that. Streets and Sant. are lazy, but if there’s money involved, they’re a little less lazy.

  76. EricaKane says:

    This sounds like private lots that have towing contracts. My favorite are the security guards that some property owners hire for parking lots. Those people will boot your car if you are 1 minute over your 30 minute parking are whatever. Its a joke.

  77. boobaloob says:

    @tinmanx: This happens with Chicago as well, in regard to monthly street cleaning. If you’re parked when street cleaning is scheduled, the sweeper goes around your car and you get a lovely bright orange parking ticket from the city’s department of revenue stuck on your windshield. What’s being discussed in this story isn’t about street cleaning.

  78. KoW says:

    Growing up in Chicago, we had many issues with this kind of trash.

    Now that I live in California, outside of San Francisco, I’m constantly amazed at how much more laid back driving, parking and existing is here, haha.

  79. bologna_wallet says:

    @Eyebrows McGee: Was it a Jeep Wrangler by any chance?

  80. Joey_Brill says:

    This needs more coverage; Bud Billiken is a black parade.

    Rendered Services Inc. preyed upon black parade goers – black parade-goers in a predominantly low income area of the city.

  81. Haltingpoint says:

    Speaking of shady arrangements that towers have with private lot owners in Chicago…how many of you have seen this one:

    On Western there is a DMV in a tiny lot and there is a restaurant in that same lot. In my several years of living in Chicago, that restaurant has been closed (and not in operating condition) the entire time. Yet if you park in its reserved spots for the DMV (which people quite commonly try to do as there are NEVER enough spaces in that lot and people basically drive around the circular lot for hours waiting for a spot) a tow truck shows up 2 minutes later to haul your ass.

    I’m willing to bet that it is more profitable and less work for the property owner to just get kickbacks from the tow company for everything they tow than it is to actually open the restaurant. Probably just a front to get towable parking spaces. Brilliant business model. Brilliant. I am so pissed I didn’t think of that.

  82. Lundah says:

    Rendered Services is taking the towing business in Chicago to a new low, if that’s possible. CPS recently contracted with them to manage parking enforcement at schools, and they’ve been going around ticketing ANYONE parked in the lots, INCLUDING CPS staff who have permits properly displayed.

    I hope there is a special level of hell reserved for these scam artists.

  83. Geekybiker says:

    @Haltingpoint: Well that lot used to have a chinese place. I went there for lunch until the DMV moved in. Then you were unable to get parking and it pretty much closed because of the DMV. IIRC there is a dmv and an unemployment office in the same tiny lot now. What a terrible combination.