Nieuwmarkt in the center of Amsterdam without, with, without the car.
Earlier this week I wrote about some of the ways cars actually decrease our quality of life as Philadelphians. Jon has also written about how much money they take out of our wallets. I also mentioned that there are two ways to form public policy, through incentives (carrots) or punitive means (sticks).
City Paper's Ryan Briggs looks at a recent dust-up over a proposal to build housing on a city-owned surface parking lot in Passyunk Square (referenced here by This Old City), and his calculations are persuasive that, from the perspective of the city budget, this land would be much better off used as housing than as surface parking: