Parking facilities constitute a major cost of doing business for both businesses and local governments. Parking conflicts are among the most common problems facing designers, operators, planners and other officials. When used effectively, parking management can significantly reduce the number of parking spaces required in a particular situation, providing a variety of economic, social and environmental benefits.
Parking Management is a form of Transportation Demand Management. It can be a tactic to reduce congestion and encourage travelers to switch to alternative travel modes.
The benefits of parking management strategies include:
- Cost savings for business and government
- More livable and walkable communities
- Using Smart Growth principles to use land more efficiently
- More aesthetically pleasing parking solutions
- Adding support for various transit modes
- Allowing higher density
There are many strategies that can be implemented with Parking Management. These are just a few.
Parking Cash Out
Parking cash out is a commuter benefit in which an employer offers
employees the option to accept taxable cash income instead of a free or
subsidized parking space at work. The idea behind parking cash out is
simple: given a choice of cash or a parking space, many people would
prefer to receive cash.
Unbundling means that parking is rented or sold separately, rather
than automatically included with building space. For example, rather
than renting an apartment with two parking spaces for $1,000 per month,
the apartment would rent for $800 per month, plus $100 per month for
each parking space. This is more equitable and efficient, since
occupants only pay for parking they need.
Shared Parking means that a parking facility serves multiple users or
destinations. This is most successful if destinations have different
peak periods, or if they share patrons so motorists park at one facility
and walk to multiple destinations. Parking facilities can be shared in
- Shared Rather Than Reserved Spaces. Motorists
share parking spaces, rather than being assigned a reserved space. For
example, 100 employees can usually share 60-80 parking spaces, since at
any particular time some are on leave, commuting by an alternative mode,
in the field, or working another shift. Hotels, apartments,
condominiums and dormitories can share parking spaces among several
units, since the number of vehicles per unit varies over time. Sharing
can be optional, so for example, motorists could choose between $60 per
month for a shared space or $100 for a reserved space.
- Share Parking Among Destinations. Parking can be
shared among multiple destinations. For example, an office building can
share parking with a restaurant or theater, since peak demand for
offices occurs during weekdays, and on weekend evenings for restaurants
and theaters. Sharing can involve mixing land uses on single site, such
as a mall or campus, or by creating a sharing arrangement between sites
located suitably close together.
Minimum or Maximum Parking Requirements
Local building codes or zoning ordinances generally control the amount
of parking that must or may be provided at a site by the site developer
or owner. Typically, parking requirements are specified as a ratio of
the number of parking spaces required/allowed per square foot, per
dwelling unit, or per some other measure of intensity of use, taking
into account the type of use proposed for the site. Parking codes
traditionally stipulate a minimum number of spaces required, or may be
framed in terms of maximums.
On-Street Residential Neighborhood Parking Management
Local jurisdictions may adopt measures to restrict parking by
non-residents. These restrictions may involve permitting, various
parking duration limits, and active enforcement and penalties.
Overflow Parking Plans
Overflow parking plans describe the management strategies that will be
applied when parking facilities fill, for example, during special
events, peak shopping periods, or temporary reductions in parking
supply. Because most parking facilities are sized to accommodate peak
demands that seldom occur, an overflow parking plan can significantly
reduce the amount of parking needed, and provide reassurance that
reduced supply will not create problems.