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Parking Madness: DC vs. Fremont

1:33 PM PDT on April 3, 2018

We've got two transit station parking craters in today's matchup, the fifth contest in Streetsblog's 2018 Parking Madness tournament.

Houston, Lansing, and Providence have advanced to round two so far, with voting still open in Friday's Greenville vs. Portland car storage slugfest.

Today's contest is a sad display of unfulfilled walkability, with one parking crater smack in the center of Washington, DC, and one in an East Bay suburb served by BART.

Washington, D.C.

DC_crater

This spot was nominated by (drumroll...) Vox co-founder Matt Yglesias, who says he's "obsessed with this in DC because it’s right in the city core."

The parking lot around the Capitol South Metro station is the one Yglesias singled out. In the original spirit of the term "parking crater," it forms a visible depression in the urban fabric. We pulled back the lens in this view since there are more parking lots nearby, and because we want to show the proximity of the nation's most hallowed institutions.

Funnily enough, the area just out of frame north of the Capitol competed in Parking Madness two years ago. Some kind of metaphor.

Fremont

fremont_bart

This right here is the area around the BART station in Fremont, California. You can make out the station toward the top of the frame. While BART offers direct service to Oakland and San Francisco from here, the station isn't exactly anchoring a walkable neighborhood.

All that surface parking by a rapid transit station is all the more aggravating in light of California's severe housing crisis. The Fremont station is the latest in a long line of BART stations to compete in Parking Madness, including West Dublin/Pleasanton, Walnut Creek, and El Cerrito. Instead of acre after acre of asphalt, how many thousands of people could be living within walking distance of these four stations?

Without further ado, it's time to vote.

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