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Old Posted Apr 5, 2010, 8:56 PM
the urban politician the urban politician is offline
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The most annoying parking lot thread

Post a picture of the parking lot that annoys you more than any other.

Below that, explain why. Common reasons include the design of the parking lot, placement of the parking lot (ie this is the one thing that just RUINS this area), the owner of the lot (he insists on keeping this a parking lot!), etc.
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  #2  
Old Posted Apr 5, 2010, 9:01 PM
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I made a blog post a while ago about the Ten most offensive parking lots in the DC region. I won't post them all here, but you can click the link to see each one.

8 out of the 10 are the result of institutional decisions rather than free market ones. That is to say, 8 out of the 10 are government or quasi-government property that isn't subject to the normal rules of land development. Without government subsidy, 8 of the 10 most annoying parking lots in the DC region would not exist.
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  #3  
Old Posted Apr 5, 2010, 9:08 PM
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Chicago has plenty, and I may end up posting more than one*, but here is one of mine:


Source

Formerly the Rock and Roll McDonald's, the company decided to redo one of their flagship locations in densely populated River North, downtown Chicago. In a pedestrian-oriented area otherwise full of highrise development, McDonald's insisted on including a massive surface parking lot & double drive thru as part of the development. Nevermind the location, nevermind the already high pedestrian traffic, nevermind the great mass transit access. Nevermind being surrounded by a gillion hotels and tourists who walk & use the gillions of taxicabs that roam the district. A once in a generation opportunity to redevelop a prime site became...the city-hating eyesore that will last another generation (note: I don't mind the design of the building itself).

And what did the city do to prevent this? Bend over, say "yes, daddy", and take it in the ass. Because after all, McD's is a Chicago area corporation.

* Actually, at the top of this picture is one of my other most hated lots. Note Walgreens' surface parking lot, right in the heart of the city. Thanks for beautifying our city, assholes!
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  #4  
Old Posted Apr 5, 2010, 9:30 PM
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Thomas and Mack center parking lot, UNLV, Las Vegas.

But then again, if you look slightly down and to the left, you can see why they can't build anything too tall in the area.

They did add a parking garage for students recently, though it barely puts a dent in the amount of people that still have to use the outside parking. This is why commuter schools kinda suck.
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Old Posted Apr 5, 2010, 9:46 PM
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Thankfully this situation was recently rectified, but this was terrible. Waterfront parking lots in the heart of downtown... The shame.



src: http://www.pbase.com/donboyd/image/77183506
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Last edited by brickell; Apr 5, 2010 at 11:13 PM.
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  #6  
Old Posted Apr 5, 2010, 9:56 PM
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a depressing topic. i don't think the internet has enough bandwidth to list all of the myriad, offensive, city-killing surface parking lots that wreak their anti-urban damage across the entire city of chicago.

rock n' roll mcdonalds is certainly one of the worst, given it's prime river north location, but sadly it's just the tiniest tip of the proverbial iceburg. the lot across the street from holy name cathedral is another extremely offensive example, due to it's obnoxious size.

oh how i loathe the automobile and the inherent destruction it has visited upon untold thousands of urban neioghborhoods across our once great nation.
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Last edited by Steely Dan; Apr 5, 2010 at 10:06 PM.
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Old Posted Apr 5, 2010, 10:02 PM
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Look closely and see if you can find the 10-acre parking lot that ruins the south end of downtown Salt Lake City:



It is nicely landscaped, however:



I almost forgot to mention that it replaced this (among other things):





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Old Posted Apr 5, 2010, 10:18 PM
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I guess I should add some commentary.

The land was owned by an evil old billionaire who, instead of building a new hotel near the convention center, built a new hotel on land he owned at the edge of the core, then he tried (and failed) to get the convention center relocated to this plot of adjacent land. Once he realized that his trick hadn't worked, he sold the land to the development company that is owned by the LDS Church. They are currently redeveloping an area three times the size adjacent to Temple square, but with the change in ownership, there is new hope that something will eventually be built on the site.
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Old Posted Apr 6, 2010, 3:40 AM
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Here in downtown Lansing, Michigan, the most offensive are a slew of MASSIVE surface parking lots owned by the State of Michigan. While the city of Lansing, over the years, consolidated their parking into garages, the State of Michigan kept the western end of downtown as a giant parking lot interspersed with state office buildings:


Applejack 25

The parking lot at the furthest left actually spans even further to the west. It's HUGE.
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Old Posted Apr 6, 2010, 4:34 PM
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This one.



It's smack in the middle of Downtown Detroit, immediately northeast of Campus Martius. It's sort of a similar situation to Block 37 in Chicago, which is now occupied again after being mostly empty for years.

Last edited by jodelli; Apr 6, 2010 at 4:38 PM. Reason: incorrect photo
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  #11  
Old Posted Apr 8, 2010, 7:18 PM
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1100 Wilshire in downtown Los Angeles.



A 15 story parking structure. One of the reasons why it was a famously unsuccessful office tower. People would get dizzy driving up the ramps.
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Old Posted Apr 9, 2010, 6:05 AM
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Behold this monster sucking land in downtown Naugatuck. It was formed by knocking down some old industrial buildings several decades ago to form the lot for General DataCom(building extending south out of the picture). The lot was well used for a bit until GDC went bankrupt. Now the majority of the lot is not even fit for parking as the fill used to fill in the foundations of the previous buildings has started to collapse. Fortunately plans are afoot to redevelop the parcel, along with the green vacant lot to the north.




In the 1950's the DOT demolished block after block of houses for a highway planned in New Haven. The highway was never built. Now there is a string of parking lots and vacant lots in the right of way.

Here too plans are being considered for redevelopment.

Last edited by scalziand; Apr 9, 2010 at 6:19 AM. Reason: MORE content
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  #13  
Old Posted Apr 9, 2010, 1:57 PM
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Atlanta has a slew of horrendously offensive parking lots. Perhaps one of the worst is at the corner of Peachtree and Linden. Why is it so awful? Because it's directly adjacent to the tallest skyscraper in the Western Hemisphere outside of NYC and Chicago, fronts the most prestigious street in Atlanta, and is across the street from a subway stop. What a waste.
google view
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  #14  
Old Posted Apr 9, 2010, 8:27 PM
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The following is not anywhere near the largest parking lot in Chicago, nor is it the worst. But it certainly is another one of the most annoying.

Picture a dense north side neighborhood, hip and with good access to mass transit. Great urban corridors with streetwalls abound. Picture an intersection with great urban buildings on three sides, lots of pedestrians, etc, but the fourth corner has a butt-nasty Baskin Robbins/Dunkin Donuts with surface parking lot. Even through the last real estate boom, in a prime development corner, this lot eluded development!

You really can only understand how annoying this lot is if you experience it. Here is the streetview--take a 360 degree look around..

http://maps.google.com/maps?hl=en&q=...12,261.82,,0,5
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Old Posted Apr 10, 2010, 7:29 PM
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Old Posted Apr 10, 2010, 11:31 PM
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/thread

That photo of Houston is like a mug shot one cannot ever really live down.
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  #17  
Old Posted Apr 11, 2010, 12:18 AM
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Atlanta's most annoying parking lot: the Downtown Connector.


http://www.flickr.com/photos/35591032@N06/3293843279/
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Old Posted Apr 11, 2010, 12:22 AM
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theres something kinda sexy about it!

edit: the houston shot (atl one is .... umm :I the lamest nerd joke around haha)
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Old Posted Apr 11, 2010, 12:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lfc4life View Post
I knew someone would post that VERY OLD photo of the east side of downtown Houston. A large part of that area has been filled in with high rises, hotels, parks, etc.. What was the point of posting a photo so old?
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Old Posted Apr 11, 2010, 1:28 AM
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Yeah, the convention center, Discovery Green, etc have really improved that section of DT Houston.
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