Parking Madness 2015 Elite Eight: Detroit vs. Camden

Today it’s on to round two in Parking Madness, our hunt for the worst parking crater in an American town. Our first Elite Eight matchup features two cities struggling to rebuild in the wake of some serious urban disinvestment, and these parking craters certainly aren’t helping. It’s Camden vs. Detroit.

Detroit

Screen Shot 2015-03-09 at 3.04.34 PM

The above image, submitted by reader Luke Klipp, is what carried Detroit over the California suburb of Walnut Creek in the first round. Klipp explains this area is right next to the Renaissance Center, where General Motors is headquartered. Klipp said:
Detroit’s waterfront is really sad when compared to its Canadian neighbor across the river, Windsor, whose waterfront is three miles of uninterrupted parkway. By comparison, Detroit has a couple parks near the Renaissance Center and then lots of parking right up to the waterfront.

Thanks to the talented Shane Hampton of the University of Oklahoma’s Institute for Quality Communities, we have historical photos to compare this area to what used to be.

Check it out:

streetsblog_detroit1951

This photo is from 1951. It looks like the area was already becoming a bit pockmarked. Detroit, being the birthplace of the American auto industry, may have been an early parking crater adapter.

Let’s look at the competition:

Camden
original-7
This photograph, submitted by Joseph Russell, lifted Camden over Mobile, Alabama, in the first round. Russell said of the space:

The neighborhood-killing parking lots on the waterfront in Camden, New Jersey. Years ago, this area housed factories for companies like RCA. Ever since, they’ve been used as parking lots for the equally neighborhood-deadening L3 Building, which is essentially a fortress separating employees from the rest of the city. Residents of the Cooper-Grant neighborhood are trying to rebuild a viable neighborhood here, and the negative effects of these huge parking lots stand directly in the way of that goal.

Let’s see what this area looked like back in 1959:

streetsblog_camden1959

Hmm interesting. Looks like it was a train yard.

Which one of these waterfront embarrassments deserves to make the Final Four? Let us know below:

Which city has the worst parking crater?

  • Camden (55%, 153 Votes)
  • Detroit (45%, 124 Votes)

Total Voters: 276

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

Parking Madness 2015: Detroit vs. Walnut Creek

|
The Parking Madness competition has never been fiercer. In yesterday’s match-up, Parkersburg, West Virginia, edged Boston by a slim 12 votes, and before that, Amarillo beat out Nashville by just six votes. Your ballot counts. We have two doozies to feast your eyes on today. The Detroit waterfront is taking on the Bay Area suburb of Walnut Creek, California. Detroit […]

Parking Madness 2015 Elite Eight: Newport News vs. Syracuse

|
Yesterday, Camden knocked off Detroit in Parking Madness, giving the Garden State the first spot in our Final Four. Today’s match pairs up dreadful parking expanses in Newport News and Syracuse, and it’s up to you to tell us which is the worst. Syracuse That right there is the picture that put Syracuse over the top in its first-round matchup […]

Parking Madness Final Four: Camden vs. Fort Worth

|
We started this Parking Madness tournament with 16 soulless parking craters from California to New Jersey, and you’ve narrowed it down to the Final Four: Camden, Fort Worth, Syracuse, and the very aptly-named Parkersburg, West Virginia. Today and tomorrow your votes will determine who gets a shot at the title and Streetsblog’s coveted Golden Crater. Camden Joseph Russell […]

Camden’s Waterfront Abyss Wins the 2015 Golden Crater

|
From the Texas Panhandle to the Bay Area, from the shores of the Detroit River to the Gulf Coast of Florida — America’s cities are a pockmarked mess, blighted by asphalt parking expanses you can practically see from space. Streetsblog readers submitted two dozen horrendous parking craters for consideration in this year’s Parking Madness tournament, and the editors picked 16 to vie […]

Parking Madness 2015 Elite Eight: Tampa vs. Fort Worth

|
It’s almost a shame that these two titans are meeting in the second round of the Parking Madness tournament, because both Tampa and Fort Worth look like they have champion potential. Yesterday, Syracuse knocked off Newport News, Virginia, to join Camden in the Final Four. Now it’s up to you to decide who gets the third slot. […]

Parking Madness 2015! First Match: Camden vs. Mobile

|
Happy Selection Thursday, Streetsblog readers — our annual Parking Madness tournament kicks off today. Over the next few weeks, these 16 cities and towns will vie for the coveted Golden Crater, awarded to the most horrendous pit of parking to blight an American downtown. It’s year three of this competition, and we’re in absolutely no […]