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Parking Madness: New York City vs. Wilkes-Barre

If there's one thing to take away from Parking Madness, it's that surface parking disasters have struck cities great and small, victimizing boomtowns and economically struggling places alike. Nowhere is immune.

Yesterday the parking lots around the Cotton Bowl propelled Dallas over the downtown Duluth waterfront. Today we have a David vs. Goliath pairing with Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, taking on New York City.

Wilkes-Barre

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Reader Brian Ferry nominated these pockmarked blocks near downtown and the city's riverfront. "It's no coincidence that several buildings in this area are now abandoned," he says.

Those abandoned buildings include the Irem Temple (the light roof in the bottom center), a gorgeous historic building that was originally a meeting place for the Shriners fraternal organization; the Spring Brook Water Company across the parking lot to the left of the temple; and the Hotel Sterling Annex in the top left.

Well, at least locals can't blame the vacancy issue on a lack of parking. Just kidding, people can blame anything on "the lack of parking," even if parking is devouring downtown.

New York City

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The Bay Plaza Shopping Center is sandwiched between two highways in the northeast Bronx, south of Co-op City, the enormous 1960s-era housing complex. Our anonymous submitter puts this crater in "the 'places near NYC that should really know better' category."

New York really should know better, but just a short distance from this site, another parking crater is in the works next to a new commuter rail station.

Pick your poison, readers.

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