Is parking the solution that creates a problem?
Yes, I know that this is not as juicy as where Joe Kennedy hangs his jacket at the end of the day, but an article in today’s NY Times, speaks to another everyday issue in Newton: Parking
Much of the story is a slightly frightening celebration of parking lots, but about halfway through the article the author notes “For big cities like New York it is high time to abandon outmoded zoning codes from the auto-boom days requiring specific ratios of parking spaces per housing unit, or per square foot of retail space. These rules about minimum parking spaces have driven up the costs of apartments for developers and residents, damaged the environment, diverted money that could have gone to mass transit and created a government-mandated cityscape that’s largely unused.”
All of which sound suspiciously like some of the local debates here in Newton. How is the availability of parking paradoxically keeping us an auto-dependent community? How are parking rules keeping uses like restaurants out of our village centers?