These Cities Are Replacing the Worst Kind of Infrastructure With the Best
In car-dependent Dallas, parking lots are ubiquitous downtown. But one lot will soon be de-paved and turned into a park. Nearby, another parking lot is turning into a temporary urban farm before it also becomes a park. Something similar is happening across the U.S. as cities begin to realize that a slab of asphalt for storing cars isn’t the best use of valuable urban space.
“I can’t imagine a worse use of land in a downtown area than a surface parking lot,” says Adrian Benepe, senior vice president and director of city park development for the nonprofit Trust for Public Land, which helped Dallas initially acquire a 3.2-acre lot that will become the new Pacific Plaza Park. “It only serves one function, which is the parking of cars…but they also represent extraordinary opportunities for creating open space parks and other kinds of public spaces that are desperately needed in many downtowns.”
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