I don’t know of anyone in the world who loves parking—except maybe Lorraine Baines—but that’s not exactly the kind of parking I’m talking about here…
I’m talking about the hassle of cruising up and down the rows of a Wegmans parking lot, trying to squeeze in next to the hummer who decided he needed an extra couple of spaces, fighting the nine other drivers who won’t even entertain the thought of walking an extra twenty feet to pay $5 for a bottle of water.
Do me a favor. If you’re at home, step outside for a moment and take a good, long look at your driveway and garage (Don’t worry, the Internet will still be here when you get back). If you don’t have a driveway or garage, step outside and catch me a Charmander!
Did you do it? Did you stare intently at your driveway/garage situation? Great! Now, think about it for a moment and answer honestly: Does your car have a bigger bedroom than you do? Seriously. What percentage of the space that you own/rent/occupy is dedicated solely to vehicular storage? Your car isn’t paying rent. Why does it get the biggest room in the house?!
What else could you do with that space the garage sits on? A jam space for your band? Art studio? Game room? Greenhouse? The possibilities are many…
Over the past year I’ve been itching to move downtown (“Oh, you live really downtown” is the common response upon mentioning my address). This past spring I finally ripped the bandaid and moved out of my mom’s house. In the month between choosing where to live and moving in, I scoped out my new neighborhood nearly every day. It was always obvious that surface parking lots dominated the usable land in the St. Joseph’s Park neighborhood, or as I like to call it, St. Joseph’s Parking Lot. What shocked me was one particular lot that never saw a car. Morning, noon, and night I drove by the lot on the Northwest corner of the intersection at Franklin & Pleasant Streets . Every time there sat only a rusty chain and two cones across the entrance…
Have you ever wanted to DO something with all of that (generally) unused street parking in Rochester? Have you ever wanted to show people that we could have livelier streets with a few less cars and a few more amenities? If you answered yes to either of these questions, it’s time to learn about Park(ing) Day. The event’s website is at www.parkingday.org but in case you want the elevator pitch instead, Park(ing) Day is an event that has been going on for over a decade around the world to bring attention to the positive impact on livability that on-street parking can have when reimagined as something other than car storage. And this is where our story starts…
After the Erie Canal was rerouted south of downtown Rochester, the Rochester
Industrial & Rapid Transit Railway (the subway) was built in
its place as a link between the five different railroads and interurban trolley
lines that served the Rochester area. As the industrial landscape of Rochester
changed, and highways replaced the railroads, the Rochester subway gradually
became a relic of a bygone era. In 1956 the subway was abandoned and much of
its route was converted into Interstate 490 built to connect Rochester
with the New York State Thruway (I-90). Read more about the history of the Rochester Subway.
RochesterSubway.com exists to help spark
public dialogue around how we can better connect the neighborhoods of Rochester
NY, surrounding communities, and their cultural offerings. Rochesters
future is written in her past. Let's rediscover it.