“The day you feel like you’ve won, you need to drive out of the parking lot and not come back.” Mark V. Hurd
Drama swirls around parking lots. You worry about finding a space, happy when you do. Angry when you don’t. Always, you hate to pay. When you leave at the end of the day, a sense of freedom beckons. Love never seems to linger in these places with the coming and going of life. They are empty as the city when cars leave.
Parking lots form an undeniable part of the city fabric. There are over 1.6 million parking spaces in Seattle. Many more in places like New York. They take up huge parts of a city. Ones some advocates say could be better used for affordable housing or public places.
Some parking lots become abandoned for good, needed no more by the city. They sit in unadorned nakedness. A few find temporary lives again as storage yards, but most just linger, mourning the changing of a city. Hoping against hope that enterprise or new uses will find them again.
Louis Baltz, the famous photographer, often photographed parking lots in stark black and white images. Sometimes he returned numerous times photographing the slightest of changes in their bland landscape.
When you happen upon abandoned lots, you can sense a sadness. Maybe from the emotions and life that once filled spaces. They can become unintended art, attracting a curiosity and mystery of their own. Their only remaining glory.
“Get there early because hope does not park your car.” John Stewart
“Someone signals their blinker for my parking spot. I emphatically wave them away, like there after my soul.” Steven Rowley
“They paved paradise and put up a parking lot.” Joni Mitchell Song
“Parking has eaten American Cities” by Richard Florida
“The End of Parking Lots, as we know them.” By Alan ohnsman