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  • Media Source Linked

How COVID-19 could change the future of parking

Across the country, parking lots — once bustling with shoppers, workers, and cars inexplicably parked at a diagonal — have become ghost towns. 

With businesses shuttered and many people working from home, demand for parking is down 90% since mid-March, according to data from the startup SpotHero. This decline has hit every sector of the industry, from airport lots to privately-owned residential spaces.

Parking shapes both the landscape and the economics of our cities: It influences how we commute, how much public green space we have, and even how much we pay in rent.

But even in good times, it’s also an industry riddled with inefficiencies. Vacant and underutilized parking spaces have long predated COVID-19.

With lots across America feeling especially barren, some entrepreneurs are seizing on this moment to reconfigure the market — and, in some instances, create entirely new use cases for giant grids of pavement.

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