Friday, July 4, 2014


Okay, just one more post today, because I am kind of catching up. But thinking about buildings being torn down for parking, that is what really happened in the Gateway District. When people started needing to take one ton metal machines with them wherever they went, they needed a place to put them, so they had to start tearing down the tightly configured buildings that made a great environment for walking transportation so they could have places to store their cars when they went somewhere. To me this all seems very absurd, but it's how we live and most people accept this completely.
Today I read an editorial in the paper written by someone from a conservative think tank who was disputing a study that said that the trend now is that people are wanting to move back into dense urban environments. Throughout the piece he used the word "congestion," talking about how people don't really want to live in congested environments, they want to live on big lots and in big houses. After a while I realized that what he was calling congestion is what I might call community, the experience of living close to other people and sharing space and place with them. This is completely how the dense compact environment of the Gateway District worked. It was a place that made community happen everyday, because everybody was out on the street walking and had to say hi and maybe talk to each other. This happens to me when I walk around my neighborhood. It's just very different from the car-based neighborhood, which needs so much space for car-storage, and all those places take away from the dense fabric that makes community happen.
The Gateway District was turned into one big parking lot for the rest of downtown.

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