Tag Archives: Guide to Parking

Packing Heavy

By Tope Longe

I’m a just-in-case person when it comes to packing for a journey. And that applies to all journeys–international, local, even from home to the office! I hardly ever travel light. I pack my handbag, lunch bag, laptop bag even if my laptop is not in it. My laptop bag carries my paperwork and books so it’s always essential baggage.

Summer holiday I took my break and decided on a vacation away from Abu Dhabi. Airport checks: I’m used to my handbag being set aside for further checks. My keys are usually in there. So is my jewelry box. But my carry-on luggage? I was surprised when it was set aside for content check. The airport official muttered, “There’s a lot going on in there!” All I had in there was my travel socks, airplane fluffy slippers, headrest/ pillow, blanket (airplanes get very cold), a change of clothes (just in case my checked in luggage was delayed), pairs of sunglasses in their relevant cases, books…

The airport official opened the luggage as he scrutinized the image of the scanned content on his monitor. He looked at me as he searched with gloves protecting his hands. Then he exclaimed, “You’ve got lots of books in there”. He reached to bring them out. He picked up my copy of A Guide to Parking and let out a loud giggle as he asked, “Who reads a book on how to park?” Needless to say, I corrected him. It’s not a book on how to park but a book of useful literature on parking management and its correlation with city, economy, and environmental improvements.

We had a good laugh. It transpired he worked for a parking provider many years ago. He didn’t know there was literature out there on parking. Well, now he knows! Perhaps we need to get a copy if we haven’t already done so and spread the word.

Tope Longe is specialist, contract performance management, with Abu Dhabi, UAE, and a member of IPI’s Board of Directors.

Trends in Parking: Future Thinking

A Guide to Parking - IPMI coverBy Richard W. Willson, PhD, AICP

Parking will undoubtedly be different in the future. Everything is changing–factors that affect the amount of parking used, the way it is accessed, the design of parking facilities, and parking management tools such as dynamic pricing. This is a time of rapid disruption in city management, transportation, and parking. Because there is uncertainty about how trends will play out and interact, parking professionals must be adaptive and creative. It is vital for the parking industry to be ready for a range of future conditions.

While some trends are clear, others are uncertain. Demographers inform us about an aging society, marked by members of the large baby boom group who will stop driving in the coming decades. While at least some of the millennial group seek urban communities that are less reliant on private vehicles, the delayed entry of some members of this generation into job and housing markets creates uncertainty about whether they will adopt living and commuting patterns as their parents did. They may.

An important question for the future of parking is this: will people own their vehicles in the future or will they prefer to use mobility services as needed? If they choose the latter, this will reduce the amount of parking used in cities and suburbs. It is likely that these preferences will differ between urban and suburban areas, with urban areas experiencing the largest decreases.

There is no crystal ball to answer these questions. There are many scenarios and contingencies, but most of them involve less parking per unit of development. Fast-growing communities may continue to add parking, albeit at a slower rate, while status quo or slow growth ones may be able to reduce parking supply. This chapter summarizes a key point: parking will play a smaller role in cities and suburbs in the future. The primary shift will be to emphasize efficient management of parking over new parking construction.

This is excerpted from A Guide to Parking. To read the full chapter, check out the whole book here.

Richard W. Willson, PhD, FAICP, is professor in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning at Cal Poly Pomona and author of Parking Reform Made Easy and Parking Management for Smart Growth.

Focus on Transportation Demand Management (TDM)

A Guide to Parking - IPMI coverBy Isaiah Mouw, CAPP, LEED GA; and Brian Shaw, CAPP

Technology has and will continue to change the travel options and services made available to the traveling public. It is hard to predict with certainty the long-term effects of autonomous (self-driving) vehicles, alternative transportation services such as Uber or Lyft, the role that ride-matching services such as Scoop will play in influencing carpooling, or how people will choose to travel when they can use Mobility as a Service (MaaS) tools. What if one could monitor commuter behavior real-time and issue rewards for reducing driving and charge higher parking rates for frequent drivers? Sounds like science fiction, but technology exists today or will very soon to make this possible.

The transportation network companies (TNCs), Uber and Lyft, continue to impact millennial-generation members’ car use. Abandoning car ownership is a real option for a growing number of urbanites. As the millennial generation moves out into the work force and lives on their own, they are choosing at an increasing rate to forgo vehicle ownership. They are using TNCs because they are cost effective and simpler than owning and operating a vehicle in an urban environment. By combining their use of TNCs with car-sharing, some members of this group are able to live car-free, or at least car-lite. A portion of these millennials will continue to rely on TDM programs to support their chosen lifestyle and will likely choose to live and work where they can do so without owning a vehicle, at least for a period of years. What they may need is not a parking space, but rather pick-up/drop-off points for a TNC ride, access to public transit, and support for biking/walking. In addition, the advent of the autonomous vehicle will certainly have impacts on TDM strategies and planning, and these impacts remain unknown at this time.

This is excerpted from A Guide to Parking. To read the full chapter, check out the whole book here.

Isaiah Mouw, CAPP, LEED GA, is vice president, municipal division, with Citizens Lanier Holdings.

Brian Shaw, CAPP, is executive director, parking and transportation, with Stanford University.