ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – About one-third of downtown Albuquerque is dedicated to parking, according to data released by the nonprofit Parking Reform Network.

The group published 86 maps of cities across the United States, highlighting the space dedicated to parking lots in city centers in an effort to inform people about the impact of parking on climate change, housing, and traffic.

The map found that 33% of the “central city” of Albuquerque is dedicated to parking. The “central city” encompasses parking areas between Marble Avenue NW to Coal Avenue and Broadway Boulevard to 8th Street. The city has a few parking structures that span entire blocks. The map does not include underground or parking lots that take up the first several floors of a building.

Parking Reform Network’s map of Albuquerque

Parking lots in Albuquerque’s city center. (Map by Parking Reform Network)

The Parking Reform Network noted that Albuquerque has eliminated off-street parking requirements in the downtown and SU-1 Transit Oriented Development (TOD). According to the Federal Transportation Administration, a TOD “creates compact, mixed-use communities near transit where people enjoy easy access to jobs and services.”

The Parking Reform Network also pointed out that Albuquerque reduced parking minimums – or the minimum number of off-street parking spaces required – in many other areas and had on-street parking account for off-street parking by different reduction rates in areas like TODs.

Story continues below:

Parking Reform Network argued that parking areas could be better used for housing, businesses, or public gathering spaces. “This parking is often clustered around main streets, office districts, and historical cores, creating a dead zone around the city’s most valuable and walkable areas that limits residential and commercial growth. Cities with high parking have ample land that could be devoted to building walkable neighborhoods, vibrant parks, or office districts,” Parking Reform Network stated.

Cities across the country with the least amount of dedicated parking spaces are as follows:

  • New York City (1%)
  • Washington DC (3%)
  • Chicago (4%)
  • San Francisco (4%)
  • Boston (6%)

Cities with the most parking:

  • San Bernardino (49%)
  • Arlington (42%)
  • Lexington (38%)
  • Wichita (35%)
  • Virginia Beach (35%)

See the Parking Reform Network’s maps of cities below, or open the maps in a new tab here: