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Long Live the Parking Garage!

Slant floor storage--Floor connection

Slant floor storage--Floor connection

Parking! We city dwellers often ask, “Is there parking?” before even venturing out the door.  For so many of us, the statement “a really great parking space can totally move you to tears” is right on spot. 

On Sunday (November 1, 2009) the Washington Post’ s Philip Kennicott  reported (On the spot: Putting parking in its proper place ) on the recent pattern of parking garage news stories and the new exhibit House of Cars  at the National Building Museum.  This article cites a lecture ST&B hosted back in January 2008 with architect Shannon Sanders McDonald, author of The Parking Garage: Design and Evolution of a Modern Urban Form (Urban Land Institute, 2007). This 312 page work is filled with amazing images illustrating the history and future of parking structures.  Over the course of several years of writing this book, Shannon made multiple trips to the Library of Congress to find images of parking structures in the Library’s books and serials. Our reference staff worked extensively with Shannon to identify pictorial materials and sources documenting historical buildings and plans .   

Cars in slots in vertical parking lot.

Cars in slots in vertical parking lot.

The Library filmed Shannon’s illustrated lecture and it can be viewed at Parking Garage and Its Impact on Urban Planning. This lecture was such a hit that our LC Blog commented on it in  Behold, the Parking Garage (Feb. 2008).

For those of you interested in learning more about parking structures and urban planning, you might be interested in our Parking and Parking Structures Bibliography

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