Thursday Open Line


It’s the height of the shopping season, and people jamming the malls with their gift lists in hand are rediscovering one of the lesser aspects of the season — finding a place to park. When the mall lots and garages end up being full, many shoppers will turn to nearby commercial lots and garages. The first city parking garage in the U.S. opened on December 5, 1941, in Welch, West Virginia. It could handle 232 cars and showed a profit in its first year of operation. Today, there are more than 18,000 parking facilities across the country, generating $8.5 billion in revenue annually. You can find current data on the country’s economy by downloading the new “America’s Economy” mobile application at <www.census.gov/mobile>.