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Parking Madness 2015

Parking Madness 2015: Nashville vs. Amarillo

We're moving on to the fourth match of Parking Madness 2015, and the competition is getting intense. So far, parking craters in Tampa, Camden, and Newport News have advanced to the Elite Eight.

Both of today's contestants could give those quarterfinalists a run for their money. Watch out as Nashville battles Amarillo for a chance at the "honor" of winning the Golden Crater.

Nashville

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This entry comes to us from Margaret Harbaugh, who explains:

Midtown Nashville, a sea of parking around a hospital cluster. Some of these rooftops are multi-story parking garages.

I just took this as a tourist to Nashville a couple weeks ago -- I was staying at a hotel across the street from Vanderbilt University and was shocked at the sea of parking lots I had for a view, the traffic jams and tangle of freeways through the city, and the stories I'd read on Streetsblog that the city's politicians had just decided against new transit. Seemed pretty ironic that there's a hospital in the middle of all this -- it's not exactly a healthy way to live!

There was a ton of infill development underway in Nashville, Taylor Swift had just bought a penthouse condo around the corner, plenty of buzz around, so I'm hopeful the city will develop in a more walkable way.

Extra points for proximity to Taylor Swift! Doubt we'll ever see this on her Instagram feed:

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Nashville is going up against one of those parking monsters that seems to have swallowed an entire downtown...

Amarillo

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Submitter Nick Sortland says:

Amarillo has one sad center for a city, which according to [Wikipedia] has always had steady population growth, but strangely a very-much dying urban center. I went there once to visit relatives, and all that I can remember is that it was large, flat, and brown. Even when coming from Fargo, ND, Amarillo made that look like a green lush paradise compared to the hard dirt of the Texas panhandle.

There is a funny thing about the part of the country from around Tulsa down through this part of Texas: it all looks burnt to hell by the sun in 45 degree view, street level retail is almost completely absent, and the traffic engineers have been kind enough to redesign nearly every road into a one-way for maximum efficiency, which almost certainly assures maximum pedestrian bleakness.

I don't know if this is some kind of hold over from the prior rancher attitudes of these places, with a desire for your own private land to defend to the death in a shootout, but these places all seem incredibly dead, with a huge absence of any kind of public space.

Interesting commentary. But downtown Amarillo wasn't always this way, and some people are trying to fix it. There's just a lot that needs fixing:

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