Tag Archives: certification

Guide to PARKSMART Certification


For use with Parksmart Certification
Version 1.0 with Addenda
Guide Version 2.3
April 2020

Congratulations on your decision to pursue Parksmart certification!
You’re on your way to increasing the value and performance of your project. This guide will lead you through the process.

There are four steps to Parksmart certification:

1. Register your project by completing the online form, submitting payment, and setting up a planning call.
2. Apply for Parksmart certification by submitting your certification documentation.
3. Review. Your Parksmart documentation is reviewed by Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI).
4. Certify. Receive the certification decision. If you’ve earned Parksmart certification, congratulations!

If you need assistance at any time, please contact us. REGISTER

When you register, there are a few key considerations:

Existing and new parking structures are eligible for certification and projects must:

Be a multi-level structure that stores vehicles. This structure may be a stand-alone building or integrated into a mixed-use building (e.g., office building or shopping mall).

Include only one parking structure. If your property contains multiple parking structures, contact us and request information on the Parksmart campus approach.

Use a reasonable Parksmart boundary:

o The boundary must include all space within the structure dedicated to parking, including occupied space integral to garage operations. Occupied space not integral to garage operations cannot be included within the boundary.

o Public spaces (e.g. plazas, gardens) managed by garage ownership or management and ancillary surface parking may be included in the project boundary at the discretion of the applicant.

o The boundary must be consistent throughout Parksmart documentation.

Projects completed and commissioned more than two years prior to registration are considered existing structures and must seek Parksmart Pioneer certification. Projects that are not yet commissioned or were completed and commissioned within two years of registration are considered new construction and may seek Parksmart Bronze, Silver, or Gold certification.

Register your project in Arc, GBCI’s new technology and data platform that helps projects track and continuously improve their performance. Provide the registration information, accept the Parksmart services agreement, and submit payment. You can then assemble your project team and begin to document your project’s sustainability features!

Project Team Roles
Individuals on your project team will be called on to perform certain roles throughout the Parksmart certification process. Here’s a rundown of who’s who, so you can select your team wisely:

Owner: The owner of the project is the person or entity who has the authority to hold and control the real and personal property, and accepts (or authorizes the acceptance of) the certification agreement. While there may be multiple owners for a particular project (if so, please submit a Confirmation of Primary Owner’s Authority Form), we ask that you identify a single individual to administer the certification process. The owner has ultimate control over the Parksmart project, meaning that GBCI will respond to the owner regarding the administration of the project over any other member of the project team.

Agent: The agent is the person (or entity) who is granted authority by the owner to register the project and accept the certification agreement. If you are using this option, remember to upload a signed Confirmation of Agent’s Authority Form.

Project Administrator: This team member acts as a project manager, overseeing the Parksmart project as well as which project team members are responsible for certain tasks or measures. The project administrator plays a key quality role by checking that the Parksmart documentation is complete and accurate before submitting it to GBCI for review, and accepting the review results once certification is achieved.

Note: the individual who initially registers the project will automatically be granted the role of the project administrator, but the owner may transfer this role to another team member at any time. With your project team, develop a game plan. Figure out which measures you want to pursue and assign them to project team members. The Parksmart Planning Worksheet is a good tool to use here. Once you’ve completed your initial plan, schedule your Parksmart planning call to review your intended approach with a GBCI reviewer and ask any questions you may have about the certification process. After this initial call, your team is ready to collect information, perform calculations and analysis, prioritize any improvements, and prepare documentation demonstrating achievement of your selected measures.


Project documentation is uploaded to the Arc platform. Arc allows you to store documents and track your progress towards certification.

Throughout this process GBCI staff are available to support you. You may email parksmart@gbci.org or request a call with a GBCI reviewer.

Projects have 5 years from registration to achieve certification. We encourage you to complete the certification process as quickly as possible (we want to promote your achievements!), but understand that embracing strategies outlined within the Parksmart Certification Standard may take time. We’re happy to discuss your certification timeline with you during your first project call.

The standard path to certification is to submit all of your measures for review at one time. If you would like to submit measures according to an alternative schedule, please contact us to discuss.

Here are some tips from past successful Parksmart submissions to make sure yours goes smoothly:

  • Open each file to verify that you are submitting the correct documents
  • Cross-check measures to make sure that you are reporting common data points, such as square footage, number of parking spaces, and total construction costs consistently
  • Highlight relevant measure information
  • Clearly and intuitively label file uploads
  • Only submit required documentation (if only a few pages of a large report are needed to provide the required measure information, highlight the relevant sections only; no need to submit more!)
  • Include concise narratives describing project-specific circumstances
    The certification fee is due when you submit your first measure(s) for review.
    When you are ready for a GBCI review of your documentation, just email us at parksmart@gbci.org.

After you’ve submitted your documentation and the certification fee has cleared, GBCI will evaluate the documentation for completeness and compliance with the Parksmart rating system.

Within 10-12 business days of your submission, GBCI will respond with a review, indicating which measures are achieved and which, if any, are pending and require further information.

If you have questions regarding a review determination or comments, we encourage you to schedule a call with a GBCI reviewer.

If you don’t achieve your submitted measures during the first (preliminary) round of review, that’s ok. The Parksmart certification fee includes a preliminary and final round of review. You can provide the additional documentation requested and submit for the final review.

Special circumstances may require additional reviews or actions that incur additional fees:
Supplemental Reviews If additional reviews are necessary beyond the two rounds, supplemental reviews may be requested, at an additional fee.

Expedited Review

In a time crunch? Contact us at least 5 business days (please allow longer if you are paying by check) prior to submitting for review to request an expedited review to reduce the review timeline from 10-12 business days to 5-6 business days. There is an additional charge for this service, and our ability to fulfill your request depends on our current review capacity. If your request can be accommodated, we will confirm and provide a custom review schedule for your project.

Submitting a Measure Interpretation Ruling

Creative projects sometimes have innovative ways of achieving a measure’s objectives. Measure Interpretation Rulings (MIRs) provide GBCI-approved clarifications or alternative compliance pathways to achieving Parksmart measures. MIRs are not precedent setting; they only apply to the project under which the request was submitted. Contact us if you want to pursue an approach to achieving a Parksmart measure outside of the standard options and documentation requirements.

Precertification Review

This is an optional review pathway, available for a fee, to help determine which measures are anticipated to be achieved by your project when you submit for certification. Projects achieve precertification after a completed Parksmart Precertification Worksheet and Precertification Scorecard are reviewed and approved by GBCI. Parksmart precertification expires after three years. If you are interested in pursuing precertification, email parksmart@gbci.org for more information.

Contesting a Review Ruling

If resolution of a technical issue related to a review has not been achieved via our customer support channels and discussion with GBCI reviewers, GBCI’s Review Challenge Policy allows for a formal challenge of GBCI rulings.


Once your project has reached a certification achievement threshold, your team can accept the review findings and celebrate your Parksmart certification!

Acceptance of your certification closes out your project review; you will no longer be able to submit measures for review or contest review decisions. Please double check that you have achieved all targeted measures before accepting certification.

Certification Levels

The level of Parksmart certification achieved is determined by the number of points that your project earns and whether it is a new or existing structure.

Existing Structures

Certification Level  |  Points
Parksmart Pioneer |  90+ points earned

New Construction

Certification Level  |  Points
Parksmart Bronze |  110-134 points earned
Parksmart Silver |  135-159 points earned
Parksmart Gold |  160+ points earned

Projects achieving Parksmart Pioneer certification must earn a minimum of 15 points in each of the three main certification categories (Management, Programs and Technology and Structure Design)

Projects achieving Parksmart Bronze, Silver or Gold certification must earn a minimum of 20 points in each of the three main certification categories (Management, Programs, and Technology and Structure Design)


Parksmart certification benefits your business’s bottom line and underscores your sustainability efforts. Once you’ve earned certification, the Parksmart Public Relations Guide can help you share your achievement with the world. By email, you’ll also get information about receiving your formal certificates of recognition and purchasing your Parksmart plaque.

Your work with Parksmart is something to be celebrated – and communicated to the world at large. Achieving Parksmart certification gives you the opportunity to share your project strategies, photos and insights, and play a pivotal role in educating other project teams.

We use your project data for the greater good: to educate and provide resources for Parksmart project teams and others around the world, showcase your strategies, and share the size and power of the green building movement.

Parksmart registered and certified projects are, by default, considered “public” projects, and included in Parksmart’s public project directory. A listing in this directory allows the general public and members of the media to look up your project listing and its related details.

All “public” projects also benefit from publicity opportunities: we may use your project data to create case studies highlighting your project’s features, reference your project on our website or to the media, or create other derivative works.

You are free to opt-out of the Parksmart project directory and publicity opportunities as a “private project” at the time of registration. All private projects that earn certification will be prompted once more to transition to public status. You will need to re-confirm your “private” status at that time, if you wish to retain it.


In rare situations, a Parksmart certification may be revoked. The Certification Challenge Policy ensures that all Parksmart project applications and subsequent reviews by GBCI team members are completed with integrity, accuracy, and truthfulness. A certification challenge may be initiated by GBCI or any third party within 18 months of a project’s certification. The certification challenge may include additional review of project documentation, the review of supplemental information, and/or a site visit. In line with the policy, you’ll need to retain all project documentation related to your certification, and the achievement of measures, for 2 years after receiving certification, to ensure that this information is available in case of a challenge.

Registration fee: There is a flat registration fee calculated on a per-project (parking structure) basis that you’ll pay up front at the time of registration. Rates are based on the fee schedule published at the time of registration. Registration fees must be paid within 30 calendar days, otherwise the registration may be cancelled.

Certification fee: The certification fee is charged on a per-project (parking structure) basis. Certification fees are due within 30 calendar days of your first review submission. Remember, GBCI will not begin your review until payment in full has been received and cleared our system. Certification fees are based on the fees published at the time the project is submitted for review and cover two rounds of review.
Other fees: Other fees for optional services, including expedited and supplemental reviews may apply.

Payment terms: Invoices must be paid within 30 calendar days. A one-time extension of an additional 30 calendar days is available – please contact us. If invoices are not paid within the required timeframe, they will be cancelled, and in subsequent requests for services, the invoice amount may change according to the prevailing fee schedule. Fees are non-transferrable.

View the fee chart »


We offer a number of resources and tools to support you during the Parksmart certification process. Most are available at parksmart.gbci.org:

Download the PDF Here

For more information
Email us at parksmart@gbci.org


Seven Quick Ways to Kickstart Your CAPP

1. Check your eligibility.

  • Do you have a high school diploma or GED?
  • Do you have a minimum of three years of managerial or supervisory experience in the parking, transportation, or mobility industry?
  • Have you completed at least 25 hours of professional development in the previous five years?

2. Review the handbook and download all the details.

The CAPP Candidate Handbook answers your questions! Download it here and curl up with a great read.

Everyone wants to know what’s on the exam and we’ll let you in on a secret—the CAPP Resource Guide is here to help. This essential guide tells you what to study, offers tips and tricks, and what to expect on exam day.

3. Sign up for CAPP Track.

CAPP Track is perfect for all members who would like to pursue the industry’s leading credential. Free and open to all IPMI members who want to learn more about CAPP, sign up to be added to our new CAPP Track, and we’ll be in touch with resources, free programs, and more.

4. Talk to a CAPP. 

CAPPs are a friendly crew—reach out to someone you know and pick their brain about the program (don’t worry–they like it!).

5. Practice makes perfect.

Our practice exam helps you envision the testing format and gets your comfortable with the kind of questions you’ll encounter—experience that’s invaluable before exam day.

6. Do the (darn) paperwork.

Get the paperwork ready. You’ll need to fill out a short application and submit a signed endorsement letter. Check out the application. (You’ll need your official CAPP candidate letter to set up a test date.)

7. Commit to a date.

Commitment’s not so scary—get that date on the calendar—it’s the best way to set up a realistic timeline to prep!

Questions? Want to talk it all through? We’re here to help. Gather your questions and schedule a 15-minute prep session with IPMI staff to get you started.  Email us at capp@parking-mobility.org



How incorporating nine parking best practices boosted a new garage at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo

Long gone are the days when the drab, utilitarian dorm room sized for a sardine was a rite of passage for an incoming freshman at a college campus. Today’s college student is looking for an interactive, amenity-driven lifestyle that goes beyond academics. Universities are listening and with good reason: Multiple studies, including one by University of California, Los Angeles’ Higher Education Research Institute, have found that students who live on campus have higher graduation rates than those who do not. From state-of-the-art facilities to high-quality student housing, today’s higher education institutions are exploring innovative ways to offer students a more multi-faceted, compelling community environment that not only appeals to the modern student but also positions him or her for greater success.

Buried within this trend is a chronic issue nearly all college campuses face: supporting new growth with efficient parking. Parking for higher education has always been a limited resource, and new construction inevitably consumes existing lots. Therefore, maintaining well-integrated parking is critical to the success of this ongoing campus transformation.

Cal Poly San Luis Obispo is among the plethora of universities investing in new infrastructure that follows this trend. Currently under construction, the new Student Housing South residential community was envisioned to support the university’s strategic vision to create a vibrant residential campus that connects academic and social lives while enhancing student success. The complex, which will include new dormitories and amenities, will be built on an existing parking lot. Watry Design, Inc. was selected to design a parking structure that would support the project and integrate it with the environment. Among the responsibilities assigned was to ensure that the design followed best parking practices for higher education.

Watry’s goal was to design a parking structure the university could be proud of. It’s about a lot more than just providing parking. To successfully integrate parking, we take into consideration the context of the site from an architectural standpoint as well as walkability. What are the needs of the various user groups? How can we help meet sustainability goals?

From sustainability to modal integration and security, the education parking best practices that follow are designed to address every area of parking as it specifically relates to the needs of higher education. How does your campus parking stack up?

Understand Campus User Groups
A successful parking design requires a thorough understanding of the various user groups on campus. Faculty, students, and special-event parkers all have different needs and use patterns that vary depending on day of the week and time of day. The Cal Poly structure is intended to serve multiple user groups that include administration and visitors in addition to students and faculty, which the design takes into account. The garage provides two-way vehicle circulation with 90-degree parking in a two-column bay configuration. In other words, the Cal Poly structure offers an intuitive route through the garage with parking stalls that are easy to get into and out of. Stair and elevator core locations are easy to locate, whether a patron is a frequent user or first-time visitor.

Consider the Context of the Site
It is important to understand the relationship between a site and its adjacencies to design an effective parking solution. Beyond its effect on the architectural design, this understanding is a driver in determining the physical location of parking within the site. Considerations such as access to and egress from the site, capacity of surrounding streets, and the effects structured parking will have on traffic patterns factored into the design-build team’s decision to locate the garage away from student housing. The Cal Poly site is arranged so that the student housing and ancillary buildings face Grand Avenue, a major circulation road on campus that serves all forms of traffic: private vehicle, pedestrian, and public transit. While creating easy access for all modes of transportation via a rear vehicle circulation road off Grand Avenue, locating the parking structure entry and exit at the rear of the site places prominence on the student housing buildings.

Integrate Modes and Mitigate Conflicts
For education parking to be successful, a network of safe, direct, and attractively landscaped pedestrian and bike paths must connect the various areas of campus. Possibly the biggest challenges in developing these paths are the potential conflicts between pedestrians, bikes, autos, shuttles, and other modes of transit. It is important to protect pedestrians and other modes from more danger-ous modes. In addition, each mode is more efficient when effective design isolates and separates from the others. For example, a pedestrian walkway should be protected from vehicles with bollards or landscaping wherever possible. In the case of Cal Poly, the design team was able to utilize the unique hillside grading of the site to avoid pedestrian and vehicular conflicts. Vehicle entry and exit are located away from the student housing central core at a lower level elevation, while pedestrians head to their destinations via upper grade exits at the opposite side of the structure. This configuration eliminates the conflicts created when pedestrian and vehicle circulation routes cross each other.

Explore Mixed-Use
As campuses densify, combining mixed uses, such as a sports field or other campus facilities, can play an important role in creating a more secure, lively environment. As mentioned above, Cal Poly is incorporating this best practice by wrapping three sides of the parking structure with ancillary functions, such as a small café, community room, and welcome center. This not only integrates the parking structure more effectively into its surroundings but also supports the university’s mission to position its students for higher success by creating a rich, amenity-laden experience that fosters greater connectivity and engagement.

Develop a Parking Management Plan
Every campus needs a comprehensive parking management plan to address peak parking demand periods. University parking facilities are typically at capacity or beyond at the beginning of every quarter or semester and during special events. This results in using 100 percent or more of the parking resources. Having a plan in place to deal with these situations will improve the parking experience for all users. Cal Poly currently has in place a parking management plan, which will be critical for the new parking structure due to its proximity to other buildings, such as the Performing Arts Center.

Connect with Transit
Parking should form a connection point with other modes of transportation. For example, shuttle and bus stops can be incorporated or kiosks providing their location can be integrated. Ample bike parking should be provided. Student Housing South was designed to encourage alternate modes of transportation, from bike racks within proximity of the parking structure and throughout the project to a plentiful network of sidewalks that guide users to their destinations once they leave the garage. There are four bus transit stations within a half-mile of the parking structure that can be utilized to further travel around the campus and San Luis Obispo. In addition, infrastructure is being provided at 15 parking stalls to accommodate future electric vehicle charging stations.

Design with Sustainability in Mind
Sustainable parking design best practices should be incorporated into each solution. Universities can utilize the United States Green Building Council’s Parksmart Certification as a guideline and even achieve certification without adding significant cost to the project. From vegetated swales for stormwater management to LED lighting to the incorporation of renewable energy sources, such as solar panels and geothermal loops, these measures illustrate a campus’s commitment to sustainability. The Cal Poly structure is incorporating a photovoltatic array on the roof level. This will not only help provide additional power but will also reduce the heat island effect of the roof deck. Additional sustainable features that have been integrated into the design are LED lighting and recycled content in building materials.

Incorporate Appropriate Security
Security is a prime concern in all parking structure environments but especially on campuses. Passive security or crime prevention through environmental design (CPTED; see the March 2016 issue of The Parking Professional for more), such as glass-backed elevators, open stairwells, and the elimination of hiding spots behind walls, can be very effective at deterring crime. In addition, active security measures should be considered based on location, such as code blue emergency phones and a video surveillance system. Security features integrated into the design at Cal Poly include stairwells that are open to the garage’s interior; increased visibility gained by eliminating columns that can obstruct views and create hiding places; and installation of of code blue emergency phones.

Provide Clear Wayfinding
Clear wayfinding is a requirement for all campus environments. Informational kiosks and plentiful signage should aid users not only in reaching their destinations but also on return. For example, the elevator and stair towers of a parking structure serve as powerful wayfinding elements. The Cal Poly parking structure provides clear views of the stairs and elevators from any point in the structure, making wayfinding easy and intuitive for both new users and those already familiar with the layout.

By designing well-integrated parking into a campus project, universities can effectively continue to expand and meet the evolving needs of students, faculty, and visitors without sacrificing what is already a scarce resource on nearly every college campus across the country.

MICHAEL PENDERGRASS, AIA, LEED AP, is Watry Design’s associate principal. He can be reached at mpendergrass@watrydesign.com

TPP-2016-10-Serving Multiple Masters




Form and function meet in Sarasota’s State Street Parking Garage

When Sarasota, Fla.’s city planners decided to develop a new parking structure, they saw it as an essential element of the city’s drive to promote economic growth. In fact, the city’s downtown parking master plan is largely designed to enhance the vitality of downtown development by encouraging visitors and employees of local businesses to park in centrally located garages and lots and use pedestrian ways to reach their ultimate destinations. The six-story, 397-space State Street Parking Garage is the second of a series of parking facilities planned for downtown Sarasota.

Ultimately, the parking master plan will provide city planners the flexibility to re-align or reduce the number of on-street parking spaces to increase sidewalk widths and pedestrian activity areas. Also, by centralizing parking, the plan minimizes the amount of parking area businesses need to develop to meet their needs. As a result, developers and building owners can focus their development investments on creating income-producing commercial and residential space rather than parking. In addition to supporting local businesses, this element of the parking master plan is also leading to the development of lower, more attractive, and more functional buildings.

Sarasota’s plan provides a terrific example of how strategic parking planning can help make cities more walkable, business-friendly, and congestion-free. In addition to providing wider sidewalks for pedestrians, the city’s plan also increases and improves landscaping downtown, provides new benches for visitors, and permits restaurants to provide outdoor services on the newly widened sidewalks.

Safe, More Convenient Parking In light of the important role parking is to play in Sarasota’s downtown plan, the primary goal of designers was to create a facility parkers would want to use. This was no small feat, considering the site’s small footprint. The site’s depth of just 105 feet with a 20-foot-wide alley created a significant design challenge. Not only did designers need to create a functional, parker-friendly facility on this small footprint, but they had to do so in a way that would support the development of a planned multi-level office or residential liner building that will be built on an adjacent site to the west of the garage. The design also needed to accommodate a 58,000 gallon stormwater detention vault, which was ultimately tucked under the ramp at ground level.

Finally, the design needed to accommodate the future implementation of a renewable energy program. To this end, the project’s parking consultants from Walker Parking included in the design the necessary infrastructure for the future installation of a photovoltaic system above the top parking level.

The functional design resulted in a two-bay-wide, six-level-high, single-threaded helix structure with parking on one flat bay and one ramped bay. With the exception of two spaces at ground level, that are compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, all 397 spaces are provided on the elevated floors and provide parking for visitors and employees of local downtown businesses. The deck’s footprint is 298 feet by 105 feet, and site boundary constraints resulted in only one row of parking being included at the ramps. The garage’s columns are typically spaced at 24 feet on center, with 48 feet at the end of bays. The north parking bay is 60 feet wide, and the south ramp bay is 45 feet wide.

Traffic flow is always a challenge in such small footprints. The consultant was able to achieve two-way flow with 9-foot by 18-foot, 90-degree stalls. These dimensions permit safe and convenient traffic flow combined with convenient parking. The typical floor-to-floor height is 10 feet, six inches, except at the ground level, which is 17 feet high to accommodate the 14,000-square-foot ground-level retail shell with a loading dock at the back of the structure. The 10-foot-high ceilings on the parking levels offer a more comfortable, customer-friendly parking experience while enhancing safety by improving visibility throughout the structure.

Access to the garage from State Street on the north is provided by an entry/exit on the east end of the deck. A second entry/exit on the east end is provided from Ringling Boulevard to the south through a 150-foot-long, two-way driveway to the garage. This driveway also
provides access to the alley bordering the south side of the structure, allowing access to the loading dock and utilities beneath the ramp. To allow tight turns for large trucks into the alley, traffic flow in the alley is one way, from east to west.

Pedestrian flow was also an essential design element. To provide the safest and most convenient experience, pedestrians are directed to two separate elevator and stair towers, one at the northwest corner of the deck and the other on the north side near the State Street entrance.

Two final design elements revolved around lighting and security. When it came to lighting, the primary focus of the electrical design was energy efficiency. Designers selected LED light fixtures arranged in locations to provide good light uniformity, exceeding Illuminating Engineering Society standards and providing a safer, more customer-friendly, and more energy-efficient experience. A lighting control system comprised of timers and photo cells further enhances energy efficiency by permitting parking operators to tailor lighting requirements around peak utilization and other considerations. The electrical system is backed up by an uninterrupted power system that provides energy for the emergency lights, and additional safety features include a surge protection system, emergency phone assistance stations, and an elevator recall system.

The electrical design also supports the city’s goal of promoting sustainable energy use with the addition of four electric vehicle charging stations. These stations are located near the northwest stair and elevator tower at the second level.

Security was an equally important design consideration. Passive security features include open stair towers with emergency phones. In addition, the interior of the deck, the stair towers, and the ground-level perimeter are well-illuminated to improve visibility throughout the facility. The design also includes infrastructure to permit future expansion of security elements, including the installation of a conduit for future security cameras at the lobbies of the stair elevator towers and multiple locations throughout the deck.

Tampa-based general contracting firm A.D. Morgan oversaw the construction of the garage, working closely with the development team, the city, and neighboring businesses. The garage structure is cast-in-place post-tensioned slabs, beams, and girders supported on a drilled shaft foundation system. The ground level is slab-on-grade construction placed on compacted fill. The structure’s stair and elevator towers are cast-in-place with conventionally reinforced walls, slabs, and beams with a structural steel gable-framed roof.

Form Meets Function
The State Street Garage’s architecture was a key element of its design. Because of its central downtown location, the garage needed to be attractive as well as functional. As a Sarasota-based architect, Harvard Jolly Architects was intimately familiar with the character of downtown Sarasota and able to design a structure that fits seamlessly—and beautifully—with its neighbors.

The garage’s attractive design presents the classical look of a residential apartment building that perfectly complements the surrounding buildings. The primary north facade along State Street is expressed with precast architectural panels with accented bands around window openings and 12-inch-deep sill ledges with dentils.

The main vehicle entry from State Street is the garage’s architectural focal point. It features precast architectural panels with arches and articulated stone veneers at vehicle and pedestrian entrances. Column panels with column capitals and bases are set in front of the precast panels. The east end of the building is block infill between the horizontal cast-in-place beams, and the east face has a stucco finish with custom foam shapes with polyurethane hard coat for columns, capitals, window surrounds, and cornices. The west elevation of the garage is masonry block infill panels between horizontal cast-in-place beams and vertical columns with no openings or trim to abut the future adjacent liner building.

The structure’s ground floor is designed to house future retail establishments, and the exterior architecture is designed to appeal to customers of these establishments while complementing the rest of the building. Continuous glazing along the ground floor and a combination of canopies and brick pavers for sidewalks with landscaping achieve a presentation that’s accessible and welcoming for pedestrians.

A final architectural accent is provided through landscape architecture. The design, which was  created by Sarasota-based David Johnston Architects, features a combination of palm trees,  shrubs, and deciduous trees to provide an attractive, welcoming environment outside of the parking facility.

Well-Earned Recognition
The State Street Garage has been well-received locally and is already considered a Sarasota landmark. It has also achieved wider recognition, having won two awards from the Florida Parking Association (FPA): the 2015 FPA Award of Merit for Parking Structure Architecture and the 2015 Award of Merit for Parking Structure Design.

BILL SMITH, APR, is principal of Smith-Phillips Strategic Communications. He can be reached at bsmith@smith-phillips.com or 603.491.4280

TPP-2016-10-Beauty and a Functional Beast





One-of-a-kind Dutch parking garage named its country’s Building of the Year.

The Royal Institute of Dutch Architects received 125 submissions for its 2016 Building of the Year. The juried contest sees hot competition from all facets of building design, so when the winner was a parking garage, people sat up and took notice. A parking garage? Building of the year for an entire country? You bet—and wait until you lay eyes on it. The underground garage in the small beach town of Katwijk aan Zee is part of a larger effort to protect the village from rising sea levels. That 70-million-euro plan put into play a “dike-in-dune” concept, which buries a wall—and a parking garage—under manmade dunes that look and feel just like the real thing. The two-pronged approach helps protect the town from rising water as waves hit the dunes and their embedded walls and allows the beach to remain a main community focus.

Under the dunes is a garage that was designed to serve the many tourists who visit the town’s sandy shores. The garage is nearly invisible; it was embedded into the surrounding dune environment in a way that was very carefully and deliberately respectful. Those in the know, including Fast Company, call it “incognito architecture,” and it works particularly well for the oblong parking structure. The garage offers plenty of parking for visitors, innovative lighting and design, and lines that led the competition jury to call it an “exceptionally beautiful object” and “virtually flawless.”

The garage was commissioned by the Municipality of Katwijk and designed by architects Royal HaskoningDHV. It contains 663 parking spaces and is largely hidden inside the town’s dunes, which were rebuilt as part of the greater conservation project. By locating most of the parking underneath the natural landscape, architects achieved their goal of strengthening the relationship between the beach and the neighboring village. The organic shape of the dunes was also used to create natural entrances and exits to the structure, easing wayfinding and orientation for drivers and pedestrians, and offer lots of natural light inside. At night, emergency exit lights create beautiful beacons along the shoreline.

Interior lighting and color was used to orient users inside the garage, which is long. Icons were also used in wayfinding for both drivers and pedestrians.

Residents of the town were hesitant when they first heard about the project, but embraced it whole-heartedly when they saw the final results. “People love it,” says Richard van den Brule, MSc, head of the architectural department at Royal HaskoningDHV. He notes that the garage was not only Building of the Year but also won the people’s choice award and an award for best public space.

“For us as a team, the results are really satisfying,” he continues. “During the design and construction stages, we already had a feeling this was going to be a very special project. Now it has become a benchmark for integrated design projects and governance, it’s won several awards, and it’s been published in media around the world.”



Developing parking managers and teaching kids to fly fish: They’re the same thing. 

The ability to develop talented managers for a career in the park­ing industry can be as challenging as teaching a child to fly fish. Though frustrating at times, I can assure you the rewards from both can be memorable! During 30 years of experience in hospitality and parking management and only half that much time as a parent, I have tackled both with the same passion and goals. The years as a developer of managers and a parent of a fly fisherman (actually a fly fisherwoman) have taught me that neither is born—they are both made.

Before you non-fishing readers decide to pass over this article, I ask you to take a moment and remember your own career develop­ment and the people whose own careers you most influenced. I am sure you’ve had similar challenges and rewards you draw upon for your own continued development. Each of us acting as teacher and subject matter expert have to adjust to different environments. As the fly fisherwoman must read the stream and select the proper arsenal for a successful time on the water, so must you take great care as the developer of future parking professionals.

Learning to Contribute
Early on in my career I did not understand young managers or, for that matter, my seven-year-old daughter (the fly fisherwoman) when they demanded to be allowed to make a contribution. But managers not only direct and complete tasks, they also make decisions that affect people, businesses, and careers. For her part, the fly fisherwoman must learn to cast so the line, leader, and tippet move effortlessly through the air and land the fly at a precise spot.

As the so-called subject matter expert, I was reluctant to give full scope to individual strength and responsibility. The idea that a manager might make a mistake and embar­rass me or the organization in the eyes of customers or clients was unthinkable. I am sure we all have this recurring nightmare! And as a parent, the idea that my daughter might place a well-sharpened hook into herself or me was more than I could chance.

Early on, I gave very little freedom to either managers or my fly fisherwoman, and I never understood why the managers didn’t excel or why the fisherwoman lost interest in the sport. My own experiences living, working, and fishing in 11 different states played a large part in my authoritative nature. Through the years I had, in some instances, very little time to settle in and give full attention to all my manag­ers and my fly fisherwoman. In time, it became evident that more time and more freedom would be necessary to excite and engage both groups.

A River Revelation
One day as I stood in a stream and remembered my own experiences as a young parking manager and fly fisherman, I recalled having the freedom to convert objective needs into personal goals. My teachers, mentors, and coaches focused on me as a person. Their aim was to enable me to develop my strengths and abilities to the fullest extent and allow me to find individual achievement. Though there were times I struggled, I learned and grew from those situations. The parking manager developed the skills necessary to assess clients’ and customers’ true needs and expectations, adapting to all emergent situations, directing resources where required to meet goals by maintaining well-organized teams, cultivating awareness and self-actualization of personnel, and building increased investment in operations and organization. As for the fly fisherman, having spent countless days catching air, trees, and water, I finally brought fish to hand.

It was a revelation. The next day I charted a new course in the development of both future parking profes­sionals and my young fly fisherwoman. Remembering an important and hard lesson once learned, I started from the bottom up. Placing my mantra—you get what you inspect, not what you expect—at the bottom of the page, I crafted a plan for both in hopes of effecting change, all the while mindful I must answer to a higher authority. For the parking manager, it was my own direct super­visor, and for the fly fisherwoman, it was her mother!

Taking a page from both parking and hospitality man­agement, the parking manager’s plan evolved. I share it here in hopes you may select some or all of the elements to advance the careers of future parking professionals:

  • Build trust.
  • Develop work standards.
  • Organize and plan.
  • Make decisions.
  • Take action on those decisions.
  • Delegate responsibility.
  • Coach.
  • Align performance for success.

The foundation of the program is building trust. The manager must interact with others in a way that gives them confidence in the manager’s intentions. The manager must also operate with integrity, demonstrate honesty, keep and fulfill commitments, and do all of that consistently. The manager must remain open to ideas even when the ideas may conflict with his or hers. The final step for the manager to master building trust is to treat people with dignity and respect.

Without a high level of work standards, the parking professional can behave in a way that’s less than profes­sional. Many in our industry had to lay the foundation for respect and acceptance by setting high standards for self and others, assuming the responsibility and accountability for the completion of work, and self-imposing standards of excellence instead of waiting and having those standards imposed by others. Remember, there are a great number of us in the parking industry who can see clearer and farther due to the fact we are standing on the shoulders of others!

The ability to organize and plan gives meaning to the madness. The ability to establish courses of action for self and others and ensuring work is completed ef­ficiently translates progress. Prioritizing, determining tasks and resources, allocating appropriate amounts of time, leveraging resources, and staying focused allows the manager to tackle complex or multiple projects.

Making Decisions
A fundamental element in everyday life is the ability to make decisions. Having the ability to identify and un­derstand issues, problems, or opportunities; gathering information; interpreting the information; generating alternatives; choosing appropriate action; and committing to the action in a timely manner sets the professional manager apart. Teach new parking professionals the lost art of making decisions to ensure their longevity.

Once the decision has been made, teach managers to take action. We all have been taught to lead, follow, or get out of the way. Sometimes the concentration must be on the propensity to act versus the quality of the action. Young parking mangers must be empowered to take independent action instead of waiting for others to request action.

Delegating is a simple task for some people, but others struggle with what and how to delegate. Knowing how and when to delegate allows the parking professional to maximize the organization’s and individual’s effec­tiveness. Managers must be mindful they do not push tasks and responsibilities to others, thinking they have removed themselves from accountability.

Coaches and Leaders
Perhaps those who have participated in sports can recall a bad coach. The parking industry is no different. Coach­es and leaders have the same traits: They both meet all events—favorable or not—with calmness and composure. The coach should have a love of wisdom and study the general principles of the field of knowledge and the processes governing thought, conduct, character, and behavior. Remember that coaching is much more than exerting authority. The parking manager must provide timely feedback and guidance to help others strengthen the knowledge they need to accomplish tasks or solve a problem.

Combining all these elements creates the environment to align performance for success. It is not enough for the parking manager to recite the words and definitions of each element. To become a parking professional, the manager must set performance goals, establish the approach, create a learning environment, track the performance, and provide meaningful evaluation.

With a written plan, I returned to the stream to con­template the implementation. As good fortune would have it, I was able to bring fish to hand and with that, I remembered the other motivation behind my plan: the fly fisherwoman! In my haste to reward myself for finalizing the plan for the parking manager I neglected to develop one for the fly fisherwoman. Later that eve­ning, I tried to do just that. I struggled getting words onto paper. Knowing I had limited time to engage and excite the fly fisherwoman in hopes she would once again take to the stream, I decided to become a student of the parking manger’s plan. Before long, I realized the same plan could be adapted to the fly fisherwoman.

The next several years were exciting for the parking managers and the fly fisherwoman. The growth of both aided in my own growth.

Remember: Future parking professionals are all around us right now. The future of the parking industry is highly dependent on the growth of managers. Just as the fly fisherwoman one day walked out into the stream by herself, stood in the early morning light, took rod in hand, and began casting with precision and purpose, so will the manager. Develop the managers as you would the fly fisherwoman. The view from the sidelines can be enjoyable and fulfilling.

DANIEL LASSITER, CAPP, is director of business development for Allpro Parking LLC. He can be reached at dlassiter@allproparking.com.

TPP-2017-01-Lessons on the Fly





Villanova University expands a garage skyward, increasing capacity and campus visibility.

By William F. Kavanagh, AIA, NCARB

As part of the Campus Master Plan implementation at Villanova University, outside Philadelphia, Pa., there was a need for additional parking on campus. Phase 1 consisted of the creation of new surface parking lots and the vertical expansion of the Saint Augustine Center (SAC) garage by two additional levels. Upon their completion, the parking spaces from the existing Pike surface lot were relocated to allow for Phase 2, a new 1,300-space parking garage, to commence. When the Pike Garage is complete, the existing Lancaster Avenue parking lot will be replaced with new residence halls for 1,135 upperclass, undergraduate students. Finally, Phase 4 of the plan will be the construction of a new performing arts center beside the new Pike Parking Garage.

The existing SAC garage, with a capacity of 270 spaces, was increased to 493 spaces during its vertical expansion. This resulted in a net gain of 223 spaces for the university. The original precast concrete garage consisted of two levels: grade plus a supported level. Because the garage is recessed into the sloped site, each flat parking level is accessed directly from grade and not via a ramp.

The many challenges associated with this vertical expansion of the existing precast parking garage included:

  • Providing new shear walls for the lateral stability of the taller, vertically expanded garage.
  • Integrating a new access-ramp connection between the existing and new parking levels.
  • Adding a new elevator and new pedestrian bridge for improved accessibility.
  • Enhancing the architectural appearance of the expanded garage.
  • Guaranteeing crane access around garage perimeter on a tight site.
  • Maintaining an aggressive construction schedule.

Design Solutions
The original garage was designed in the early 1990s with reserve capacity to be expanded by one level in the future. An analysis of the existing foundations by the structural engineer and the geotechnical engineer found that a two-level vertical expansion was possible. However, the original design did not provide adequate lateral support for such a two-level vertical expansion. The lateral design criteria had become more stringent under subsequent editions of the building code. New cast-in-place concrete shear walls had to be inserted into the existing precast garage. This required excavation for new shear wall foundations within the existing garage footprint. Micro piles were selected due to the
low overhead working clearances beneath the existing garage floor. In addition, holes had to be cut into the existing floor of precast double tees to allow for shear wall continuity up to the new floors. The cast-in-place shear walls were tied into the existing double tees of the existing supported floor. New precast shear walls were installed on top of this as part of the new precast superstructure of the expansion above.

A new internal ramp was required for accessing the two new upper levels from the existing supported level of the garage. Galvanized steel framing, cast-in-place concrete, and special precast detailing were required to provide a smooth transition between the new and existing garage portions. The initial ramp from the existing flat double tee floor was a speed ramp without parking before transitioning to a lesser sloped ramp with parking.

An elevator and a pedestrian bridge were added at opposite ends of the expanded parking garage. The elevator was provided to allow for accessibility to all floors. The elevator shaft was carefully inserted into an opening in the existing garage that previously accommodated a stair. Careful design and detailing as well as some underpinning of an existing retaining wall at the elevator pit allowed for the elevator to be accommodated within the existing garage footprint without the expense of an external elevator tower. The pedestrian bridge connected the new third level with the adjacent grade for a better and more convenient connection to the heart of the Villanova campus. The bridge spanned
over the sloping site.

Fitting In
The architectural design of the newly expanded parking garage was important to the university. The size of the original two-level garage was obscured by the sloping site and landscaping. The perceived mass of the new expanded garage was much greater and required appropriate architectural detailing to break down its scale and blend more contextually with the campus. Keeping with the collegiate gothic style prevalent on campus, buttressed shaped column covers with integral stone veneer cast into the precast were provided. They provide a three-dimensional quality to the facades, helping to break down the scale of the building. Stone veneer was also added to the shear walls at the ends of the garage. The difference architecturally between the original and the vertically expanded garage is very pronounced and has been well-received by the university’s community.

Sufficient crane access around the perimeter of a garage is essential for a vertical expansion with precast concrete. Typically, for new precast garage construction, a large crawler crane erects the building from within the garage footprint. This allows for the crane to get very close to the structure during erection. With a vertical precast expansion, the crane has to be on the perimeter and reach over the existing garage for erection of the expansion. Instead of a crawler crane, a very large, wheeled, mobile hydraulic crane—a Grove GMK7550, 550-ton capacity crane—was utilized. This crane was required to erect the precast expansion from two opposite sides of the garage. The greater mobility of the wheeled crane versus a crawler crane was beneficial for this reason. Additional site constraints that affected the construction of the expansion included the sloping site, existing trees, and the adjacent railroad tracks. The sloping site resulted in increasing the distance between the road where the crane was located and the garage itself. The longer distance required a bigger crane with a longer reach and lifting capacity. Several trees were removed to allow room for the crane to swing its loads into place during erection. A couple of very large trees were required to remain and required special means and methods to work around.

Finally, the proximity to the adjacent rail lines required special approvals.

An aggressive construction schedule was specially tailored to minimize disruption to the campus and its academic calendar. The faculty and staff who utilized the original garage were displaced during the construction of the vertical expansion. The time the entire garage was closed was reduced by installing the foundations for the vertical expansion with partial closures of just the required immediate area. Also, the use of precast allowed for the schedule to be compressed further. The precast elements were fabricated offsite at the same time the foundations were being installed.

Vertical expansions of existing garages are inherently more complicated than that of new construction. Combining the existing construction with the new expansion required careful coordination. As a result, the construction costs are usually greater for a vertical garage expansion than that of a new garage. However, sometimes building upon an existing asset has the greatest outcome, where the resultant garage is better than the sum of its parts.

WILLIAM F. KAVANAGH, AIA, NCARB, is director of parking design for The Harman Group, Inc. He can be reached at bkavanagh@harmangroup.com.

TPP-2016-08-Going Up


PARKSMART FAQ: A PRIMER ON THE GROUNDBREAKING GARAGE CERTIFICATION Parksmart FAQ: A Primer on the groundbreaking garage certification programPROGRAM

By Rachel Yoka, CAPP, LEED AP BD+C

What is Parksmart? Parksmart (formerly Green Garage Certification) is the only sustainability rating system designed for parking structures, featuring parking and transportation-specific measures that address the unique challenges and opportunities to increase efficiency and sustainability in this distinct building type.

What Happened to Green Garage Certification?
Originally developed and launched by the Green Parking Council, Green Garage Certification was rebranded Parksmart under the aegis of Green Business Certification, Inc. (GBCI), the certification arm of the United States Green Building Council (USGBC). GBCI acquired the program effective January 2016 and added the Parksmart Certification to its complement of sustainability ratings systems, including the LEED family of certifications for buildings, renovations, existing buildings, and neighborhoods.

What Is the Role of the Parksmart Advisor?
Parksmart Advisors are trained by IPI, in coordination with GBCI, to offer specialized  consulting services to clients and organizations pursuing Parksmart Certification for parking structures. The Parksmart Advisor serves as a guide and technical expert on the program. Although Parksmart Advisors are not required for Parksmart Certification submissions, their training and experience with the program will benefit both the certification process as well as the sustainability decisions and improvements made to parking structures in pursuit of certification.

How Do I Become a Parksmart Advisor?
Individuals who successfully complete the training program receive a certificate and are listed as approved advisors by GBCI. The training is currently offered in a full-day, face-to-face professional development class that includes scenarios and application of measures
in a case-study format, as well as an assessment at the conclusion of the training. IPI is currently collaborating with GBCI to develop an online, blended-learning format for the Parksmart Advisor Training, allowing anyone to take the class during a set period of time online with an instructor. This training program will be available in early 2017.

How Is the Certification Organized?
Parksmart Certification is arranged in four major categories: management, programs, technology and structure design, and innovation. Each of the four areas contains individual measures that are scored on a point basis to offer varying levels of certification under the program. Currently, there are no required measures in the rating system.

Does the Program Address New Construction and Renovation?
Certification is available to both new and previously constructed parking structures. Currently, all garages follow the same standard. Additional detail on these classifications is available in the Guide to Parksmart Certification.

How Does Parksmart Certification Relate to IPI’s Sustainability Framework?
IPI’s Sustainability Framework provides seven primary objectives that advance sustainability goals and the parking profession. These seven objectives are complemented by 10 action items for IPI as an organization.

The Framework reinforces the certification, stating our intention to “increase education and information sharing and promote the use of rating systems and benchmarking tools such as the Parksmart Program for new and existing parking assets.” The Framework
sets objectives and strategic direction for the parking industry but does provide specific guidance on how to increase efficiency and sustainability. The Parksmart Standard provides specific, detailed operational guidance and best practices for every parking facility, regardless of whether certification is pursued.

What Are Some of the Criteria Addressed by Parksmart?
The management section contains 16 measures totaling 90 points and includes parking pricing, shared parking, proactive operational maintenance, and building systems commissioning. The programs area contains 13 measures totaling 64 points and includes wayfinding systems, traffic flow plan, carshare program, rideshare program, low-emitting and fuel-efficient vehicles, alternative-fuel vehicles, alternative-fuel fleet vehicles, bicycle parking, and bicycle sharing/rental. The largest section, technology and structure design, contains 18 measures totaling 88 points: HVAC systems—occupied spaces, ventilation systems—parking decks, lighting controls, energy-efficient lighting system, and design for durability. The innovation section includes a single measure focused on including new technologies, best practices, and unique ideas to the program. It also allows points to be applied to those projects that successfully and significantly exceed certification benchmarks.

What Resources Are Available to Support the Parksmart program?

  • The Parksmart Certification Standard, which is available in the USGBC online store, serves as the primary reference for certification and contains detailed information on measures, objectives, point values, compliance paths, and documentation requirements.
  • The Guide to Parksmart Certification is the companion document to the Standard. Available for free download, this document introduces the structure of the program, includes eligibility, certification levels, and basic guidance on pursuing certification.
  • The Parksmart Documentation Package contains the technical revisions to the certification program that have been added since the launch in 2015. The revisions offer clarification and revised compliance paths for select measures.
  • The Parksmart scorecard serves as a working document for applicants and Parksmart Advisors to track progress toward certification.
  • The Parking Professional magazine highlights structures that have achieved certification in the parking.org Resource Center.

Contact parksmart@gbci.org to register a project. For more information, visit gbci.org/certification.

What Does the Transition to USGBC Mean for Parking Professionals?
With the acquisition of the program by GBCI, the Parksmart program gains significant resources to expand and promote certification, as well as advance the content of the program through innovation and collaboration. Similar to the LEED rating systems, the next version of Parksmart will refine the program and the specific measures, raising the bar for the entire industry. Parking professionals now have an industry-specific program to certify their structures, with enhanced visibility, awareness, and recognition for their sustainability achievements.

TPP-2016-08-Parksmart FAQ

RACHEL YOKA, CAPP, LEED AP, BD+C, is IPI’s vice president for program development. She can be reached at yoka@parking.org.

Gorgeous The 2016 IPI Awards of Excellence

Gorgeous The 2016 IPI Awards of Excellence


It’s not something in the general lexicon, but we’re hearing it more and more, as designers and parking professionals design lots and structures that are functional, sustainable, and sometimes drop-dead gorgeous.

IPI’s Awards of Excellence recognize those projects that make the public say “wow.” From beautiful, art-filled garages to lots that become social centers of their communities (really!), parking is really going places, and this year’s awardees demonstrate that. Awards were announced at the 2016 IPI Conference & Expo in Nashville, Tenn. For information on submitting for the 2017 awards, see the end of this article.

And now, on with the parking show!

CATEGORY I—Best Design of a Parking Facility with Fewer than 800 Spaces and Category 6— Award for New Sustainable Parking & Transportation Facilities Excellence

E11 Parking Project, Abu Dhabi
Parking Division, Department of Transport, Owning Agency
Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Mohammed Al Muhairi, General Manager, Parking Division, Dept. of Transport
Maintenance Section, Parking Division, Dept. of Transport–Project Management
Parsons International Limited, Consultant and Mechanical Engineer
Man Enterprise Ltd., General Contractor
Ravi Potwar, Engineer, Dept. of Transport
Zwarts & Janoma Architects, Architect


A parking study revealed a shortage of public parking spaces in sector 11, a central business district of Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates. As a result, plans were drawn for a 726-space underground garage that incorporated relevant improvements to nearby roads and infrastructure. A temporary, modular structure of 509 spaces was constructed to accommodate loss during construction of the final garage, which was designed to be easy to navigate and include electric vehicle (EV) parking, 41 spaces for women, and parking for disabled drivers.

The new underground garage eliminated corners in favor of curved walls, which offer increased safety features and don’t collect trash as straight corners can. Wall panels incorporate LED lighting, and each floor features its own color scheme for easy wayfinding. Stairwells feature illuminated handrails and granite floors, and the structure is remotely monitored.

The ground floor of the structure features a play area for children, basketball court, and landscaping suitable for the environment. Slabs and walls are reinforced for weight load and noise control, and the structure was rigorously tested for waterproofing.


CATEGORY 2—Best Design of a Parking Facility with 800 or More Spaces Capital Crescent Garage (Bethesda Parking Lot District Garage 31)
Montgomery County Dept. of Transportation Division of Parking Management, Owning Agency
Gaithersburg, Md.

SK&I Architectural Design, Architect
Smislova, Kehnemui & Associates, Consultant
PN Hoffman, Developer/Partner
Cagley & Associates, Structural Engineer
Clark Construction Group LLC, General Contractor
Rodgers Consulting, Civil Engineer
Walker Parking Consultants, Parking Consultant
StonebridgeCarras Associates


To relieve cramped parking in the busy downtown area of Bethesda, Md., Montgomery County purchased two lots totaling 279 spaces and built an underground garage with more than 1,000 spaces. The garage sits beneath a street and two mixed-use buildings with luxury condos and apartments atop 42,000 square feet of street-level retail.

The project incorporates 984 public parking spaces and 264 privately owned residential spaces in a four-level structure. A realignment of the street above the garage allows a single control point to serve the structure’s two points of ingress and egress. The garage has three double-loaded bays with 90-degree spaces on each side of a 24-foot, two-way drive aisle; it features easy pedestrian access throughout.

Four of the garage’s elevators are oversized to accommodate bicycles (the garage is adjacent to the heavily used Capital Crescent Trail), and a surface-level bike drop-off area entrance is offered.

Exhaust shafts for fresh air extend through the garage, and driveways feature paving that distinguishes pedestrian crossings. A 24/7 security patrol monitors the garage, and cameras are located at all entries and exits along with all pay station lobbies and gates. Efficient lighting and white ceilings keep things bright inside, and six EV charging stations serve drivers. Wayfinding uses standard graphics and signage and is color-coded by level. Art glass windows depicting the history of the county add visual interest.



CATEGORY 2—Best Design of a Parking Facility with 800 or More Spaces Florida International University Parking Garage 6 Tech Station
Florida International University, Owning Agency Miami, Fla.

PGAL, Architect-of-Record
Facchina, Construction Manager
Ross & Baruzzini, Mechanical Engineer-of-Record
Miller Legg, Civil Engineer
Walter P Moore, Structural Engineer-of-Record
Curtis & Rogers Design Studio, Landscaping
Thomas Hartley, CAPP, FIU Security
HUB Parking Technology, Parking Vendor


Architectural design for this seven-level garage complex responded to many needs: greater access to parking and public transportation, more options for retail and services, and a visually appealing campus landmark. The new structure offers all of that with 2,100 new parking spaces, master planning for a future transportation hub, and a very appealing building.

The campus loop road in front of the garage was widened to offer additional lanes, bike lanes, a turning circle, defined pedestrian paths, and campus entrance traffic improvements. An open-air, stainless-steel-clad pedestrian bridge is connected to the second floor of the garage, which features 51,500 square feet of retail, a gym, a multi-purpose corridor, covered food store, and special-needs day care center. The building also houses five classrooms, training labs, and meeting and conference rooms.

Exterior design was configured to reduce perceived massing while giving the structure a signature presence. Layering architectural precast panels on the facade, incorporating revels and architectural banding, and incorporating the university’s signature blue and white colors throughout make this a very attractive garage. A landscape and hardscape plaza buffers the structure from the loop road and offers a green space for social gatherings. Sidewalk design creates easy pedestrian access to bus stops, bike storage, area roads, and the garage’s classroom and meeting space features. Traffic direction can be reversed for faster exit during peak times, while a parking availability system with sensors and digital signage on each level give visitors real-time information. The complex is highly sustainable and meets many LEED criteria.


CATEGORY 3—Best Design/Implementation of a Surface Parking Lot
453 Spadina Road (Carpark 164)
Toronto Parking Authority, Owning Agency
Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Our Cool Blue Architects, Inc., Architect
Councillor Joe Miheve, Ward 21–St. Paul’s, City of Toronto
Terraplan Landscape Architects, Landscape Architect
EGF Associates, Planner
Forest Hill Village Business Improvement Area, BIA
Across Canada Construction Ltd., Contractor
exp Services Inc., Engineers

TOTAL COST: $686,000

Originally opened in 1987 as a 43-space surface lot, Toronto’s Carpark 164 was  redeveloped into a 58-space parking lot with a new public seating area. The redevelopment helped alleviate parking demand from nearby businesses and incorporate some area master plan elements.

A bioswale and permeable pavers facilitate a sustainable stormwater management system, and a tree planting layout reduces urban heat-island effect while being drought tolerant.

Drivers pay for parking via a pay-and-display system and can pay for, track, and extend their parking sessions via smartphone. Low-maintenance plant and construction materials reduce the need for constant upkeep, and tamper-resistant security measures and regular patrols help keep things safe. The community has embraced the lot’s seating area, which has become a natural gathering space.

Parking spaces are marked with alternate-color inset pavers rather than painting and eliminating a curb between the pedestrian right-ofway, and the lot promotes openness and multi-functionality for events that include a public market and other lot offerings. Canopy trees shade parking and the pedestrian areas, and the project has been met with very high community approval.


CATEGORY 4—Innovation in a Parking Operation or Program
Park Miami Parking Authority
Miami Parking Authority, Owning Agency
Miami, Fla.

Beefree Media, Creative Agency
Margarita Castro, Project Manager, Beefree Media
Alejandra Argudin, CAPP, Chief Operations Officer, Miami Parking Authority
Rolando Tapanes, Miami Parking Authority, Parking Vendor
Wilfredo Soto, Miami Parking Authority, Parking Vendor

TOTAL COST: $5,500

The Wynwood Arts District of Miami, Fla., is home to more than 70 art galleries, retail stores, antique shops, and eclectic bars, along with one of the largest open-air street-art installations in the world. The Miami Parking Authority (MPA) found the opportunity to weave itself into the fabric of this community by holding a contest to coincide with ArtBasel 2015 (an art fair).

More than 20 artists responded to a call for art issued by the MPA, and eight winners were selected to launch the “Park Your Art” event, turning distinct parking machines into pieces of art. In November they painted live in front of the public.

Each painted pay-and-display machine proposal was reviewed by the MPA and Beefree Media. The initiative gave local artists exposure to the public by adding liveliness to an often overlooked parking device. Machines were covered with anti-graffiti lamination to protect the artwork, which will remain on display until the 2016 contest. Winners were selectedcbased on originalitycof content, technique, and creative interpretation of a theme (IHeart 305 was last year’s theme).


CATEGORY 5—Best Parking Facility Rehabilitation or Restoration
Birmingham-Shuttlesworth International Airport Parking Deck Structure Restoration
Birmingham Airport Authority, Owning Agency
Birmingham, Ala.

Carl Walker, Inc., Structural Engineer & Parking Consultant
Khafra Engineering Consultants, Inc., Architect, MEP Engineer
Taylor + Miree Construction, Inc., General Contractor
Volunteer Restoration, Restoration Contractor
Birmingham Engineering and Construction Consultants, Inc., Testing and Special Inspector


This project tackled a vast restoration of a 5,300-car structure that was constructed in phases from 1971 to 1997, bringing the garage up to date, improving safety, and doing it in very innovative ways.

Two miles of expansion joints were removed and replaced while 410,000 square feet of deck coating was laid down, and 2 million square feet of ceiling was painted. New perimeter fall protection barriers were installed; structural repairs were made; and operational, aesthetic, and durability upgrades were planned and implemented. Two new restrooms were constructed for the public and employees of a rental car facility inside the garage. Security upgrades were made, and the façade was pressure washed and sealed. Floor drains were added to address pooling water and concrete bollards replaced chain-link fencing to separate different areas of the structure, allowing pedestrian pass-through. Light fixtures were cleaned, replaced, and/or supplemented, and ADA spaces were reconfigured at current terminal access points with new signage and striping.

Work had to take place without shutting down the structure; the airport authority provided historical occupancy data to allow workers to shift to different areas during high- or low-occupancy times. The contract was structured for flexibility and used a combination of lump-sum, unit-cost, and allowance items, which was very unusual. Operational improvements represented a significant portion of contract value and added to the complexity of the project but addressed the central objective of improving the overall experience of airport patrons.

CATEGORY 7—Award for Architectural Achievement
Miami Design District City View Garage
DACRA, Owner’s Representative and Security Specialist Miami, Fla.

Timothy Haahs & Associates, Inc., Engineer, Architect and Parking Consultant
KVC Constructors, General Contractor and Construction Manager
Leong Leong, Designer
Iwamoto Scott, Designer


It’s not every day a new garage goes up in a major design district, and this one by TimHaahs fits into its setting beautifully while serving its ultimate purpose very effectively. The City View Garage includes approximately 22,660 square feet of retail and 14,790 square feet of office space. The Leong Leong façade on the west consists of titanium-plated, stainless-steel panels cut and folded for a 3D effect, and the Iwamoto Scott façade on the east features a blue and silver pattern that complements the surrounding Palm Court buildings. These dramatic facades and dramatic lighting combine to provide an attractive connection between parking and the rest of the development.

The middle portion of the south façade features a public art piece by John Baldessari that transforms pixels from dots into different diameter cutouts in steel panels, providing tone variations and an image that becomes gradually more visible at a distance.

The structure was designed with post-tensioned concrete slabs and beams that allow spans to be achieved and keeps decks column free. Pay-on-foot machines in both stair towers reduce wait times for exiting, and wayfinding graphics throughout the structure make it easy to navigate both in the car and for pedestrians. Highly visible from the nearby interstate, this project offers visitors their first impression of the design district, and it is landmark of its own.

A New Home Base

by Rachel Yoka, CAPP, LEED AP 

IPI builds a new website for members and the parking community.

IPI has a new online look, but our new website is far more than just a costume change. When IPI staff and the Board of Directors made the decision to launch a new website, we focused on a number of key elements that required change from the ground up. The design of the new site was what marketers might call a “white paper” or “blue sky” enterprise. What that means is we chose not to update or review our existing site and make incremental changes. It means that we started with a blank page to build a new mobile-friendly resource for members and the industry alike.

The Heart of the Site
The Resource Center is a living, changing, ever-growing database of articles, blogs, publications, events, and more. We sought to build the most content-rich resource possible.

Looking for that The Parking Professional article on green walls from awhile back? Or that blog post on self-driving cars? Go to the keyword search box and type away. If you prefer, you can add specifics and search by content type (articles, blogs, and more). Searches will reveal not only the full text of the article but also a downloadable pdf version and the ability to immediately email, share, and print.

We did some of the searching in advance for you, as well. Categorized by major topics in our industry, you can select a topic and browse the most recent additions in the following areas:

  • Certification Programs.
  • Consumer Resources.
  • Education & Training.
  • Finance.
  • Frontline.
  • Management & Human Resources.
  • Operations.
  • Parking Matters®.
  • Planning, Design, & Construction.
  • Recognition & Awards.
  • Regulatory Environment.
  • Research.
  • Safety & Security.
  • State & Regional Associations.
  • Sustainability.
  • Technology.
  • Transportation & Mobility.

Blog All About It
The Parking Matters® Blog launched in 2012 featuring the voices of our industry and publicizing the great work done by parking and transportation professionals worldwide. Utilized by media and parking pros alike, the blog platform provided members with the latest on the industry and the trends that will shape our shared future. This resource continues to do so on our new platform.

The blog is now embedded right in the IPI website and gets home page real estate in our front page feed. If you haven’t signed up yet, now is the time—look for daily posts throughout the week to keep you talking about the issues that matter. Same terrific and up-to-date information, with even greater visibility and frequency.

But wait, there’s more! Our members are the most active in the business—and we know you have a whole lot to say. IPI wants to hear directly from you so we made it as easy as we could. Membership has its privileges, as they say, and all members are encouraged to submit blog posts and join in the conversation. Blog posts should be 150 to 200 words on a relevant topic, event, or news story and can be easily submitted online. When you decide to blog with us, think short, sweet, and informative. We can’t wait to hear what you have to say.

To sign up and submit your blog post, check out any footer page of the website or go to parking.org/blog.

Your Personal Planner
If you are a planner, you know that everyone loves a good calendar. (And if you don’t have the planner gene and prefer to go with the flow, we’ve got you covered, too.) The calendar provides links and registration information for all IPI conferences, events, and trainings, as well as state and regional association events. These events include all scheduled educational opportunities, including webinars and face-to-face trainings. Plan ahead to make sure you make the most of your 2016 (and beyond)!

The Hallmark of IPI
Education and professional development is the hallmark of IPI. Our mission is to advance the parking profession, and the most critical component of that mission is to advance parking professionals themselves through numerous and varied educational opportunities to foster individual growth and development. It’s a lofty goal, and we are up to the challenge.

IPI provides a depth and breadth of training that is unmatched in the industry—and we know it’s a lot of information. One of our primary goals was to make sure members and colleagues have the many tools and resources at their fingertips (or their laptop, tablet, or smartphone). So we wanted to provide you with a brief outline of the very dense and resource-rich pages that talk about professional development.

Professional Development includes:

  • Accredited Parking Organization (APO).
  • Awards & Recognition.
  • CAPP.
  • Education & Training.

As you can imagine, each of these topics is chock-full of information, enough to fill many magazine editions and too much to print here. To give you a taste of the information available, here’s a sampling of what you will find when you go exploring Education & Training:

  • Annual Conference. With more than 50 education sessions and informal learning opportunities, as well as face-to-face CAPP point classes, this is the most intense (and productive) week all year to amp up your expertise and knowledge.
  • Online learning. Did you know IPI has invested in one of the best online learning programs on the market? From here, you can access multiple self-paced CAPP point and CEU offering courses for you and your team, especially those new to the industry. Selections include the following, with more on the horizon:
  1. Conflict Resolution.
  2. Customer Service.
  3. Foundations of Finance (NEW)
  4. Introduction to Parking.
  5. On-Street Parking Management.
  6. Parking Enforcement.
  7. Sustainability in Parking.
  8. Technology Trends in Parking.
  • Onsite Courses. Choose to bring IPI training right to your office and elevate your entire team, or participate in regularly scheduled trainings, offered in a variety of locations. Courses include:
  1. Conflict Resolution.
  2. Customer Service.
  3. Media Training.
  4. Parking Design, Maintenance & Rehabilitation.
  5. Parking Enforcement.
  6. Tactical Communications.
  7. Green Garage (now Parksmart) Assessor Training.

There’s a lot to offer a parking pro (or newbie) here so we encourage you to discover the kind of education that is the best fit for you and your team.

Engage and Reap Big Rewards
IPI is a big community with big member benefits. Many of these are built right into parking.org. Members can pitch articles and submit blog posts, as well as share news releases about their companies and the industry.

Members and subscribers to The Parking Professional have immediate access to all issues and articles in a new format for online access. To see the latest, log in to your account and navigate to the magazine. Industry and member news feeds are right on the home page. If you would like to see your organization’s news front and center, visit parking.org/submitnews.

Do you have a request for proposal (RFP) or request for qualifications to publicize? Visit parking.org/rfp to post and get greater visibility for your upcoming project. Are you looking for the best talent in the industry? Navigate to parking.org/careerhq to post a position and find your next rising star.

Tips and Tricks

  • Did you know that our Board of Directors has superpowers? Do you know who has the ability to do a cartwheel better than any other non-YPIP? Get to know your board (and our staff ) just a little bit better in the About section (at the very top of the site).
  • Make parking.org a favorite on your browser of choice. Most sites perform best on Firefox and Chrome, and we recommend these browsers to get the most out of your browsing time.
  • Subscribe to the IPInsider, our biweekly newsletter, and the blog. Delivered right to your inbox, this quick step will save you time and keep you up to date.
  • Be your own content marketer and build your personal brand—when you see a post that made you smile or read an article that opened your eyes to a new trend, share it on Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter.
  • Keep us posted, and share your feedback—this is your home page and your organization. We’ve received great comments and ideas so far, so please keep them coming!

RACHEL YOKA, CAPP, LEED AP, is IPI’s vice president for program development. She can be reached at yoka@parking.org.

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