Does Too-Plentiful Parking Spark Wild Parties at Chicago's Montrose Beach?

Parking is at the center of proposed urban design and planning responses a recent melee at Montrose Beach in Chicago, which followed an un-permitted concert.

John Keilman reports on responses to a "massive, illegal party" at the Montrose Beach earlier in July. Much of the discussion was provoked when "Ald. James Cappleman, 46th, said [the party] was enabled by the relatively plentiful parking nearby."

Much of the discussion about the beach's parking has taken place on Streetsblog, where John Greenfield details the debate about the beach's parking. Streetsblog writer Steven Vance has even calculated (on his personal blog) the size of paved parking lot area for the beach, which totals 9.25 acres (or seven football fields).

Keilman also devotes significant ink to a proposal (interesting how often citizen-led urban design proposals get mainstream media attention in Chicago) by local architect Matt Nardella: "In sketches he posted online, Nardella shows the two parking lots just west of the sand replaced by open land dedicated to a bird sanctuary. Street parking, now free, would be metered….Other changes he suggests include adding  Divvy bike sharing stations, a boardwalk and a large parking area for bicycles."

Full Story: Architect's Montrose Beach plan would sacrifice parking

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