The hi-rise I live in was designed in the 1920s by a Russian-born architect who did not envision how important cars would become. The building with 24 units has space for just 19 cars in its garage.
This in a neighborhood where, today, couples are rumored to break up over . . . parking. That’s how tough finding a street spot can be.
We knew when we bought here that the wait for a garage space would be 5 to 10 years. That was back in 2006. Our hopes rose in 2008 when a number of units went up for sale—but then real estate slowed with the economic crisis.
Meanwhile we pay to park our car at a garage a block away. Every morning we go there to collect the car, bring it back to our garage (where we’re allowed to park during the day), and return it to its paid spot at night—arrangements that weigh down everyday chores like grocery shopping or the fun of going out impulsively at night.
On the upside, we’ve become less car-reliant. We take mass transit, walk if we can, grab a cab if we must. Over time, these ways have come to seem natural. Having a spot in our own garage—now that will be strange.