On one of my favorite podcasts they discussed how parking lots, parking cars and parking spaces are affecting the economy and the way we live life. Economists and city planners are recommending that less parking and more living space would save money and reorganize urban living. More walking, less driving, less money spent parking and spent on parking.
Do you have to compete or pay for parking where you live? Do you aree with the philosophy that more walking space would be better for urban economies and lifestyle?
Some points from the podcast:
But when you add up all the people who are parking in Westwood Village, if they had the same average that we had, that adds up to 3,600 vehicle miles of travel a day. That’s the distance across the U.S., and that’s just in the 15-block area of Westwood. If you add it up for a year, that’s equal to 36 trips around the Earth or four trips to the moon hunting for underpriced curb parking in a little 15-block area. And I think it’s happening all over the world. When other people do these studies, they find very similar results.
City planners in every city, including large parts of New York, specify the minimum number of parking spaces required for every building depending on its use. A restaurant typically requires at least 10 spaces per thousand square feet, which means that the parking lot is three times bigger than the restaurant. And if nothing can be built unless it meets that parking requirement, and the parking requirement was established on the assumption that everybody’s going to park free, well it does seem to be kind of self-fulfilling that people drive to it.