The Ten Worst Parking Lots and Garages in Denver

Bad parking lots can turn even the most mild-mannered people into asphalt-hungry psychopaths. In an attempt to encourage alternative modes of transportation and give us all conversation space for cathartic relief, we've assembled a top-ten list of the worst parking lots and parking structures in Denver – and some tips on how to avoid them if you can.

1. The Source
The front parking lot of this popular artisan food market is still unpaved and riddled with potholes you must endure to get to the actual parking lot – which has a steep gravel ramp as an entryway. The parking garage isn't connected to the Source, so visitors have to walk along the same ramp cars take in order to get out of the garage. The ramps have orange plastic barriers to shield pedestrians from cars, but that just means there's only about a lane and a half for cars coming from both directions. We secretly think that this is a Hunger Games-style obstacle course in which the loser is buried in a pothole. Instead of driving, Uber or Lyft – but don't ride your bike. Braving this parking lot is safer than riding two wheels down Brighton Boulevard.

2. Red Rocks Amphitheatre
Parking at Red Rocks is easy enough if you give yourself some time — plus, it's free. What's bad is getting out. If you leave at the very end of a show, you could sit in traffic for a half hour, maybe an hour, before you even make it to the main road. Lyft or Uber will take just as much time (though you can drink much as your little heart desires while stuck in traffic, unless your driver objects). If you're driving, take our social-media editor's advice: Park in a lower lot, walk up the nature path (be sure to have a flashlight or a fully charged phone handy, as the path is unlit) and take the stairs, not the ramp, to the venue. Leaving the show even just a minute before the end will save you from wasting away in traffic.

3. Cherry Creek Shopping Center
The parking structures at this mall are always a little confusing and often full, but they're not terrible. What landed the mall's parking garages on our list is the fact that, come January, patrons who plan on shopping for more than an hour will have to pay to park. That's truly awful.

4. Whole Foods Cherry Creek
While just about any Whole Foods could have made this list, the lot of the Whole Foods in Cherry Creek is often hell on earth. During weekdays it's not so bad, but on weekends and at 5 p.m. any day, you're likely to find a Cherry Creek mom trading her first-born (Reginald, seven, fluent in Mandarin) for a spot. Avoid the surface lot altogether and utilize the oft-forgotten parking structure next to the store.

5. King Soopers in Capitol Hill
At least the parking lot at Whole Foods Cherry Creek is a self-contained shit show. The parking lot at this King Soopers backs up traffic on Corona Street, where you're usually left waiting for a spot to open up in the lot or behind the guy waiting for that spot. Either way, you're stuck.

Keep reading for more bad parking lots.

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