Jason McDowell, on OnMilwaukee, took a look at the change of Milwaukee in particular, and how many buildings have been replaced merely by surface parking lots. His exploration of this idea explains how Milwaukee has lost something with the replacement of many buildings with surface lots. Through much of the article, McDowell goes through some of the aspects of architecture, and how the buildings were interesting. In doing this, he also gives image reference of what the building looked like, and the barren parking space that now occupies that space.
His writing encapsulates this idea of personality being taken away from the city in doing this quite well; “It removes the three-dimensional history and replaces it with a flat surface that can only hold two states: empty or littered”. These older buildings that have since been razed had personality to them. There was an interest built up by seeing buildings of three dimensions elevated into the skyline of Milwaukee. This interest has since deteriorated as those spaces are now occupied only by surface lots that either have cars filling them or are empty.
McDowell obviously believes that the move to more surface parking in lieu of many of these buildings is not a particularly good one, for a couple of reasons. The most prominent reason in his writing is that the space loses interest and three dimensionality. Another point he makes, however, is that the expanse of parking also brings forth more desire to use personal vehicles rather than making use of public transit in Milwaukee. He definitely set out to identify this idea as a problem, and I am at least personally inclined to agree.