For your daily dose of amusement/ outrage/ disbelief at the city we live in, the NY Times has an article about apartment buildings selling private parking spaces for as much as $225,000. Seriously.

If parking at the Onyx Chelsea, a new 52-unit condo at 28th Street and Eighth Avenue, is any indication, there is plenty of demand. The first two spots sold for $165,000, the third for $175,000 and the last two for $195,000. Each space will include about $50 in monthly maintenance costs. Still, there are three buyers on a waiting list.

Cynthia Habberstad is at the top of that list. She chose not to buy a spot when they were selling for $165,000, but changed her mind only to learn that all the spaces had been taken.

“At first, I was getting overwhelmed and didn’t want to spend the money,” Ms. Habberstad said. “I’m kicking myself now, believe me.”

She and her three children, ages 7, 9 and 11, live on Long Island, but the children’s modeling schedules bring them into the city at least twice a week, and the apartment they bought in the building will be a pied-à-terre.

“If we’re coming in late from dinner or we have a lot of stuff in the car, do we really want to have to walk a few blocks to get home?” Ms. Habberstad said. “It all makes sense now that I don’t have it.”

Hmm, on the high end for that neighborhood, parking spaces cost around $300-325 a month for indoor parking (a little less for outdoor) according to AutoParking.com, but let's assume $350 a month for $4200 in yearly fees, and then double it, to factor in having three kids...that's about $8400 annually in parking costs. Oh, hell, maybe someone better at math and real estate can explain why buying a nearly $200,000 parking spot is a good choice, arguments about convenience aside. Is paying a mortgage on a parking space better? Or is it just a status symbol, much more so than a FreshDirect fridge? Some wise people snatch up parking spaces, looking to sell them later (is there a parking space bubble?) or to rent them out. Which means next thing you know, we'll be hearing about the worst "parking space landlords" in the city.

Here's the city's guide to parking spaces around the city. We want to know what Calvin Trillin thinks about this.

Photograph of a parking garage sign in Queens by Vidiot on Flickr