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 to win the coveted Golden Crater.
Rounding out the competition are these parking craters in downtown Louisville and Troy, Michigan, outside Detroit.
While efforts to revive Downtown Louisville are making some progress filling in some major parking craters, just south of Broadway in an area known as SoBro, immediately south of Downtown, there’s more square feet of asphalt than people. You can see in the upper left corner, the castle looking building is Louisville’s old train station and now the headquarters of TARC, the city’s transit agency. And it’s completely surrounded by parking lots. SoBro connects Downtown with the leafy neighborhood of Old Louisville, with few parking lots and many Victorian mansions, but it serves as a sort of pedestrian/ cyclist no-man’s land that creates a flat wall of sorts between the two areas. SoBro is home to a couple of colleges and Louisville’s Main Branch public library, but here you’d never guess people existed at all.
An anonymous reader who grew up in Troy, Michigan, submitted this parking lot, arguing that its sheer size should make it a contender:
From my childhood, the Oakland Mall, located at 14 Mile and John R, in the Detroit, MI, suburb of Troy. The entire area is outlined in yellow, and the uses are outlined in red. The total area is just over 103 acres, of which the mall and a few other ancillary uses add up to just under 28 acres. That means that there are about 2.7 acres of parking spaces and their access for every acre of actual use. To give a sense of the scale of this parking area, its perimeter is nearly 1-3/4 miles around — which would take over a half hour to walk!
Vote for your choice, and we’ll see you in Round 2.