January 5th is the 2013 New Years Race (1/2 marathon & 5K) which takes place pretty much through the middle of Downtown. You could let this affect your night out, or you could utilize other options of getting down here and/or parking. The only 213 bars this race should affect are Seven Grand, Cole’s, Las Perlas and The Varnish. See below for some tips.
First off, your best option is not driving at all! The Metro now runs late on weekends (till 2am) so you can take the train Downtown and come home while still hitting the bars in between. You can take the train from pretty much anywhere in LA, unless you live in Santa Monica. If that’s the case you will have to drive or take a bus to a Culver City station and park. For more details click HERE to view the Metro website so you can plan your route.
If you plan on driving there are plenty of parking lots available for parking. The streets will be closed along the route (http://www.newyearsrace.com/course) so you will be shit out of luck if you plan on parking on the street. I also foresee a ton of people and tents and such along the route so it could be a huge mess. However, Joe’s Parking has a ton of lots all around Downtown where you should be able to park off the race route. See their website for all options Downtown http://www.joesautopark.com/main/map.html. If you plan on going to Seven Grand I believe the lots located between 8th and 9th on Grand or Olive should be clear. If you are hoping to go to Cole’s/The Varnish/Las Perlas then getting there going eastbound might be a little tricky as the race runs from 7th St. to 1st St. straight up Broadway so you will no be able to cross on 6th St. My suggestion would be to take 12th St. eastbound and take a left on San Pedro St. Take San Pedro St. up to 8th St. and hang a left. Then hang a right on Main St. which will put you at the corner of 6th St. of Main St., which is where Cole’s/The Varnish/Las Perlas are located. There are a couple Joe’s Parking Lots located on the southwest and northwest corner of that intersection.
Good Luck! Hope to see you out!