[image] Space used for cars in downtown Houston

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submitted by Avatar Fried_out_Kombi edited

[image] Space used for cars in downtown Houston

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5714

Space used for parking cars.

neptune

Uh yeah it would be funny to add red to all the roads

n2burns , edited

It's even better when it's done in a different colour. Then it makes it really clear that the freeway is *wider* than the 3 parking that abut it on the left.

lntl

*car storage

space used for cars would include streets, roads, and highways as well

werefreeatlast

Yup. I came to point this out too.

Avatar Rimu

A lot of the time, there are minimum parking requirements - e.g. a mall is required by law to have enough parking for their busiest day of the year. So the other 364 days of the year, guess what happens...

Avatar jenny_ball

there's a Costco in Torrance CA that is just completely packed full of cars at all times i don't even understand.

PraiseTheSoup

Honestly that's just Costco from my experience. Packed even before they open in the morning

Avatar jenny_ball

yea. i used to go to one in Tacoma that was almost never full.

Avatar pseudo

You forgot the streets.

Avatar Gigan

Cities are designed for cars now. Ridiculous

EinfachUnersetzlich

In some places.

MonkderZweite , edited

edit: right, europe. But i don't think it's better in US.

KGB , edited

Why aren’t there more underground or at multilevel parking available instead of the expensive real estate used as parking lots anyway? Surely it’s more efficient is it not?

Genuinely curious here.

demonhockey

Garages are expensive to build and if you design your roads so that no person with the means would choose anything but driving and ignore the rest, then sprawl becomes the reasonable choice, since people are driving to every destination anyway. What's the point of the added expense of a garage if you don't really care about being close to other things nearby?

KGB

I mean it could free up more space for apartments and other mixed use buildings in the area. Gives a chance for the walkability in the area too, if executed well.

Magiccupcake

Yes but that's socialist.

And goes against my donors paycheck.

/s but many people in charge are willfully ignorant that society can be built in a way that doesn't rely on cars.

lntl

*communist

Avatar Fried_out_Kombi [OP]

In addition to what others have said, parking lots are also an easy and cheap way to keep vacant land for speculative purposes.

Basically, our current property tax system allows you to buy a vacant lot, sit on it for a number of years while paying pennies in taxes (because a vacant lot or a parking lot is very low value, even if the land is very high value), and then resell for a much higher price after the city has grown around it. Basically no work, but tons of free profit.

The remedy? Tax land instead. That way, your tax burden is based on the value of your land, not the value of your improvements, so that this form of land speculation becomes uneconomical, while also strongly incentivizing you to develop something more valuable, e.g., housing, offices, etc.

ArmoredThirteen

There is a guy near where I live that I think does this. One of the lots has a tiny restaurant on it that I'm like 95% sure is a front, with a huge parking lot. They've bought a few lots nearby and do by the month parking permits. The whole area is being turned into apartments so it feels like he's just sitting on them for the right offer.

Avatar SuiXi3D , edited

Not much underground because Houston is basically a swamp.

Nothing up high because why do that when there’s a whole bunch of flat ground?

Never mind the lack of public transport, bike infrastructure, or the general fact that literally everything is built way to far apart to make walking an option…

KGB

Welp, thanks for the info.

baldingpudenda

Houston is built on a swamp so you can't really dig a lot without dealing with humidity, water, etc. Multilevel means investment and debt. It can take many years to break even. You can make $25/hr per space and quickly make profit and sell in 10 years for 10 times what you paid for. There are multi level parking though.

Basically, it's greed.

KGB

It’s always greed…

Avatar paraphrand

One reason is it is millions of dollars more expensive to build underground parking.

I think I’ve seen examples where the underground parking for a commercial building costs as much as or more than the building above.

formergijoe

There is underground parking in downtown Houston as well, but during heavy rain they flood like crazy. I want to say the underground garage near the theatre district was closed for a few months after Harvey.

friend_of_satan

That color scheme is really hard for my color blind eyes to see, since the orange (?) and green blend together, but dang, what a fucking statement it makes! Just imagine what could be there if people weren't driving. Amazing visual.

zik

At some point all there'll be is car parks and nowhere to actually go once you step out of your car.

meiti

in Houston one would suffer without a car. it's designed completely around cars and trucks.

HobbitFoot

Did this come from CityNerd's video or someone else?

n2burns

CityNerd's maps tend to be much prettier than this (not trying to throw shade, I would literally do much worse than this) and lately, he's just be using this instead of making his own.

Avatar hex_m_hell

Assuming the random dafa I got off the internet is true, 5% of the US is covered by parking and the area of the US is 2.4 billion acres, digging these fucking things up and planting trees could sequester about a billion tons of CO2 per year (while, you know, preventing billions of tons from cars). Making all surface parking in to parks with grass and trees could sequester about 6 billion tons per year.