Worth a peek (but maybe not much more) is the Freakonomics blog at the NYTimes today, where an urban playah currently suffering the indignity of graduate study at UCLA tries to explain parking downtown with his colleagues' six-page rant. The central business districts compared are Phoenix, LA, and San Francisco.
One is surrounded by desert, one by water, and one by freeways. But the intrepid urbanists try to pull some relevancy from the comparison anyway, even as they declare our downtown lifeless.
Somehow the students made what should have been a 1,500 word op-ed into a monster pdf. Read it; you'll laugh.