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2007 Chicago Auto Show 99th Edition February 9-18,2007
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There's no such thing as Free Parking.

The costs -- economic and social -- associated with large surface parking lots has been receiving more and more attention of late. Parking lots have been credited with impeding the establishment of a quality pedestrian environment, disrupting the urban fabric, encouraging greater auto use, and harming the environment.

In addition to these social and environmental costs, large surface parking lots also have an opportunity cost, which is the economic value of not putting the land on which these lots sit to some other use. In The High Cost of Free Parking, UCLA professor Donald Shoup estimates the cost of free parking to the national economy is over $300 billion annually.

Paved Over: Surface Parking Lots or Opportunities for Tax-Generating, Sustainable Development? is a report from the Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT) that analyzes the value of urban parking lots in economic terms and development potential. PDF - 52 pages (3.2mb)

Is this what we want Chicago to look like too?

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