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‘Paved Paradise’ Review: Why Downtown Is All Parked Up

Parking policy has shaped urban centers and incentivized driving. This book covers the missteps and neglect of parking policy through history.

  • Parking is the primary determinant of the way the place you live looks, feels, and functions.
  • Mid-20th-century consensus that the best way for cities to compete with booming suburbs was to make it easier to park downtown.
  • Parking-minimum laws passed by virtually every U.S. jurisdiction in the 1950s and ’60s.
  • Abundant parking incentivized driving and discouraged use of public transit.
  • Disruptors helming parking-related startups, grassroots activists and some farsighted government officials are working to reverse this course.
‘Paved Paradise’ Review: Why Downtown Is All Parked Up
Well-meaning city planners wanted to keep older urban centers competitive with suburbs. Their solution: mandate plenty of parking.