Your 2016 Parking Madness Champion Is… Louisville!

21f7143d-98f0-491b-ac63-ade6d11c6e04-3

Streetsblog readers spent the past three weeks voting in Parking Madness, the single elimination tournament where cities compete for the Golden Crater — a symbol of the shameful amount of space we’ve allowed surface parking to consume in our communities. We started with a field of 16 and now we have a champion.

The winner of this year’s Golden Crater is Louisville, which prevailed over Federal Way, Washington, in our final.

All this barren asphalt in the “SoBro” neighborhood near downtown carried Louisville to victory. Branden Klayko submitted the entry and urged readers of his blog Broken Sidewalk to put it over the top. He told us he hopes the “disreputable honor” will draw attention from city leaders:

In the SoBro neighborhood, directly adjacent to the Central Business District, large swaths have been leveled and forgotten as the area is overshadowed by the much more glamorous lights and architecture of Downtown Louisville. As people begin to realize just how much space there is to fill, SoBro’s potential will hopefully shine through. The hard part is actually filling it. Among the challenges of a parking crater like this is that flat land requires new construction, which is often quite expensive. Had the older urban fabric remained — even in an abandoned state — it would have been much easier to revitalize this area into a real neighborhood.

Cities can take action to arrest or reverse the growth of parking craters. When developers in Denver were demolishing buildings and replacing them with surface parking, the city banned the practice. And in cities that need to provide better incentives for developers to build on parking lots, the elimination of parking requirements is a good place to start. Louisville has parking requirements for every part of the city outside of the central business district.

Whatever strategy makes sense for this location, we’re rooting for Louisville to turn its parking crater around. Until then, to guard against complacency, we present the Golden Crater.

golden_crater_2016

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

Parking Madness: Louisville vs. Troy

|
So far Streetsblog readers have voted on seven head-to-head matchups in our 2016 Parking Madness tournament. Soon we’ll be down to the Elite Eight of parking craters. (You can still vote in the Long Beach vs. Muncie poll, which we’re extending to account for the holiday weekend in California.) But first, there’s one more pair of asphalt horrors in the running […]

Parking Madness 2016 Championship: Federal Way vs. Louisville

|
This is it, folks. We started out with 16 parking craters in this year’s Parking Madness tournament, and just two remain: the asphalt-dominated downtown of Federal Way, Washington, and the grey parking lots in the SoBro section of Louisville, Kentucky. Louisville scored a major upset yesterday, beating many commenters’ pick to win it all, downtown Niagara Falls, New York. Meanwhile, Federal Way […]

Parking Madness Elite Eight: Wilkes-Barre vs. Louisville

|
The final spot in the Final Four is up for grabs today, as we conclude the second week of the 2016 Parking Madness tournament. So far, parking craters in Dallas, Niagara Falls, and Federal Way, Washington have advanced to this elite stage of the competition. In today’s matchup, a waterfront parking crater in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, goes up […]

Parking Madness Final Four: Niagara Falls vs. Louisville

|
Only three cities are left in the running for the Golden Crater in Parking Madness 2016. Today’s matchup will determine which insane parking will take on Federal Way, Washington, in the championship match. Read up on the case for these two semi-finalists and vote below. Niagara Falls Niagara Falls is stunning, isn’t it? This is downtown, just a few […]