Parking Madness 2019 Round 1: Kansas City vs. Minneapolis
There’s March Madness. And then there’s Parking Madness. Our 2019 tournament starts today.
This year is different. Rather than scoping all the saddest urban parking dead zones, we’re looking at the cities that have turned parking craters into beloved urban places.
Let’s start with the first two of 16 pairs: two Midwestern downtowns that have come a long way. Yes, it’s Minneapolis vs. Kansas City.
Kansas City’s “Power and Light District” was submitted for consideration by reader Kevin Carlyle — whose before and after photos are below:
Carlyle tells us that this area is served by the Kansas City Streetcar, which is one of the better-performing local streetcars, and has helped enliven sidewalks and reduce parking pressure throughout the Paris of the Plains (as the Missouri side of town is known). There’s still a few parking lots in the picture — but a few are slated for development as well, says Carlyle.
The arena pictured in the “after” shot is the Sprint Center, which does not host a sports team, and is mainly used for concerts and special events. Sometimes arena areas can be terrible parking craters. In this case, it seems to have helped fill in a parking crater.
Alex Schieferdecker nominated this former parking crater in Minneapolis’s Downtown East neighborhood.
Not too long ago, this was a moonscape of parking lots and one or two bars and a souvenir shop serving the moon kingdom itself, the Metrodome.
Now, it’s got a new stadium, new park, a new light rail connection through its existing station, new office buildings, new hotels, a Trader Joe’s, and a lot more residential, with even more on the way.
Which deserves to go onto the second round? Vote below — polls close on Monday afternoon.