Tag Archives: sustainability

The Gift of Teaching

By Brian Shaw, CAPP

I was contacted recently by a group of students interested in starting an airport shuttle service as a sustainability project. They believed they could reduce vehicle trips using TNCs (Uber/Lyft) while providing students a more affordable and cleaner way to get to the region’s airports during academic breaks. After talking to them, I realized they had not considered a critical element of a sustainable program: the financing. They had not secured any funds to subsidize the service or pay for the needed administrative effort needed to organize these trips.

Those of us in higher education should see our roles as not just administrators, but with undergraduate students, as additional educators. We are leaders who work and deal with real-world issues every day, but in an academic setting, we have a unique perspective to share with students interested in sustainability.

Thanks to my interaction as well as support from my colleagues in the sustainability program and student affairs, these eager students will go back to the drawing board. We plan to help them determine how best to offer a sustainable effort that helps the planet and improves the quality of life of users, but is also financially viable. I urge us all to be sustainability educators when the opportunity arises.

Brian Shaw, CAPP, is executive director of parking and transportation services at Stanford University.

Preparing for a Connected, Autonomous Future

By Michelle Wendler, AIA

The development of connected and autonomous technology has opened up a future of endless possibilities for the parking and mobility industry, all with the potential to not only change the way we park and move but also open up new avenues of sustainable design that will make our world a better place.

Sustainability is already an integral part of everyday best parking practices, from installing photovoltaic panels to pursuing Parksmart certification. As we continue to innovate and get closer to a truly connected future, we will create even more green opportunities. The continued proliferation of electric vehicles will further reduce emissions. The evolution of driverless cars may open up possibilities to densify and reduce street and lot parking. Connected cities have the potential to reduce congestion and create more sustainable mobility solutions.

While we may not have definitive answers as to what the impact of connected and autonomous technology will be and how and when our infrastructure will evolve, this exciting new horizon provides us with some unique opportunities to help shape that future. The value we as parking professionals can offer our clients is to design today’s projects with an eye on tomorrow, to put them in a better position to adapt when the time comes.

Things owners can do now to prepare today’s parking facilities for tomorrow’s needs are to design with future electrical capacity, wireless needs, and EV charging technology in mind. Even if this infrastructure is not necessary today, it can avoid costly upgrades in the future. Owners can also view structured parking as park-once transportation hubs and as such, incorporate bike lockers and information about public transit options available once you park.

Likewise, evaluating the possibilities and upfront costs of adaptive reuse can help owners make informed decision on how to make the most out of their facility during the course of its lifespan. Adaptive reuse is an exciting topic, but it is also a costly undertaking that requires careful consideration to determine if it is the right approach for a specific project. For more information on the cost of adaptive reuse, click here.

This Earth Day, let’s celebrate the possibilities a connected and autonomous future offer us, with an eye on the steps we can take now to help prepare for it.

Michelle Wendler, AIA, is principal with Watry Design, Inc.

Opening Up a Whole New Frontier: Storytelling for Sustainability

By Paul Wessel

The air quality in Delhi is among the poorest in the world; it’s so bad that many people are quite literally allergic to the air. Doctors told Kamal Meattle, CEO of the Paharpur Business Center, that his lung capacity had diminished by 30 percent, that he should leave his city and seek safer air elsewhere.

But Kamal didn’t want to leave his home. Instead, he discovered that certain indoor plants could actually generate clean air. He began growing them inside his building. Since then, respiratory illness has dropped 34 percent among the building’s workers and air pollution-associated medical symptoms have decreased.

Kamal’s LEED-certified Platinum building is now the healthiest office building in Delhi. And his story is a model for how telling stories both changes lives and saves them.

We know stories are powerful. They convey the underlying values and impact of what we do. They help us reach larger audiences. This is true in IPMI’s outreach campaign, it’s true in the sustainable buildings movement, and we’re making it true throughout the U.S. Green Building Council. As our CEO Mahesh Ramanujam wrote on SustainableBrands.com recently:

In the coming days, as part of an overarching campaign called Living Standard, we will release the first in a series of reports that examine how storytelling can help us make strides in sustainability. Rooted in personal conversation and interaction, this new type of data will help us better understand how people from all walks of life feel about the issues at the core of the green building community’s mission–sustainability, green buildings and the environment.

The Living Standard campaign builds upon USGBC’s existing, world-class certification programs and works to ensure that every person on the planet, regardless of background or circumstance, has access to a better, more sustainable quality of life and a higher standard of living.

Parksmart’s leaders have great stories to tell. For example, check out Pam Messenger on Garage at Post Office Square, Mark Cho on WePark’s work in China, and Salem State’s Transportation Center’s Ed Adelman on YouTube.

Keep doing the great work you do. And make sure to tell your stories about the good you do in the world. Because, as they say, Parking Matters.

Paul Wessel is director, market development at the U.S. Green Building Council. This is the first of a week-long series of posts celebrating Earth Day.

Parking Paradigm

A new structure connects people and parking in the heart of downtown Berkeley, Calif.19-04 Parking Paradigm article

By Cali Yang

The Center Street Parking Garage in Berkeley, Calif., serves visitors of the bus­tling downtown as well as the Berkeley arts and theater district. The 250,000 square-foot, eight-level garage sits on an existing site previously occupied by a four-story parking structure built in the late 1950s. Easily accessible by mass transit, bicyclists, pedestrians, and drivers, the new $40 million structure provides 720 spaces for cars and 350 spaces for bikes in eight levels. It was constructed for $40 million.

Design and Aesthetics

The garage features an art exhibit space, cafe, bike va­let, public restroom facilities, state-of-the-art security system, and a dynamic parking count system with red and green indicator lights that show available spaces. The public restrooms contain stainless-steel fixtures, tiled floors, and open entrances with graphic display. The garage also houses a bike-share network and in­cludes a BART bike station with a bicycle-equipment repair shop and 55 secured bicycle parking spaces.

Graphic color schemes throughout the facility provide easy visibility for wayfinding to and from the vertical circulation elements and orientation to either end of the building. Vivid red and green signage ele­ments signify the two entrances into the garage and help patrons navigate throughout the structure. Large arrows painted on the floor denote safe pathways for pedestrians. Differently colored wall graphics at every floor indicate the direction to the arts district and Center Street. A state-of-the-art navigation sys­tem helps patrons find available spaces more quickly.

Additional graphic elements, such as recycling sig­nage, oversized restroom signs, electric-vehicle (EV) charging, and tire inflation station spaces, provide easy identification.
The exterior facade consists of folded perforated metal panels, creating a wave-like form on both the Addison Street and Center Street facades. The metal panels are in more than 20 size variations, and each one is numbered and bolted into place in an accordi­on-like fashion. The elevation is capped by a contin­uous metal-panel-clad canopy that protects the stair and visually terminates the facade. A covered canti­levered walkway at the second level is clad in an ac­cent-colored perforated metal that articulates up the exterior on a dramatic twisting staircase. The stair­cases provide an open, safe, and secure way for visitors to access the downtown area. The exterior design is highlighted by accent lighting that is programmable and allows a dynamic variety of colors for visual effect at night. The chic exterior design is an eye-catching sculpture and enhances the vitality of Berkeley.


The City of Berkeley commissioned a compre­hensive multi-project street and open space improvement plan (SOSIP), which is intended to increase pedestrian activity throughout the downtown area. Reducing the number of street parking spaces widens sidewalk space and increases foot traffic. Due to seismic and func­tionality issues, the city decided to build a new replacement garage on the site of the existing 420-space structure, which was constructed in 1958 and closed in 2016. The new garage was created with the SOSIP in mind—bringing to­gether a community vision of an engaging and
vibrant downtown.

The new structure also features ground-level retail space, cafe with open sidewalk, and landscaped path­ways that offer seating areas for patrons. A free public bicycle valet is also available to visitors to the area, which encourages use of alternative transportation. Approximately 10 percent of Berkeley residents com­mute by bicycle, and creating a rider-friendly facility was extremely important to the city. The garage is con­veniently located within half a block of the Downtown Berkeley BART station, so it is easy to drop off a bike and hop on the BART train.

Berkeley Community College is located across the street from the garage and provides a convenient option for students to use the valet and 24-hour bi­cycle facility in the building. On the Center Street side, a coffee shop is located at the ground level with an extra-wide sidewalk for customers to gather and socialize. There is also a landscape parklet area with benches for patrons and pedestrians.

The garage features a flexible lane at each entrance to allow traffic to switch directions based on the time of day and traffic flow to avoid backups caused by events in the theater and arts district. The garage is designed in a double helix configuration to provide maximum park­ing capacity while maintaining a high level of service for roof-level patrons exiting the structure. The double helix ramp allows drivers to circulate two parking lev­els with each 360-degree trip, thus expediting exit and ostensibly converting this eight-level structure into two intertwined four-level structures. Cross-over ramps and extensive dynamic signage are incorporated to pro­vide flexible way finding options for users.

The garage is equipped with a state-of-the-art guid­ance system featuring red and green lights and camer­as monitoring traffic flow at the garage intersections. Wayfinding systems provide interior and exterior parking stall counts of available spaces by level and direction proximity indicators leading patrons toward the open spaces. Other special and unique amenities include a tire-inflation station for cars and bicycles, preferred parking for fuel-efficient vehicles, and a car-share program. Emergency phones are located throughout the building and connect directly to the police department.

Collaboration and Community
The new parking structure supports the economic, insti­tutional, and artistic vitality of Downtown Berkeley. It is centrally located in the heart of downtown with conve­nient access to Berkeley City College and the arts district with theater and music venues. Rates for the new garage are significantly lower than surrounding street parking, which encourages patrons to park in the structure and allows visitors to spend more time in the area.

Providing an increase of 63 percent in parking availability, the new garage has brought new vibrancy to the community and encourages visitors to park and walk to their destinations. The art gallery on the ground floor on the Addison Street frontage features rotating art displays, which are selected and approved by the Berkeley Civic Arts Commission.

International Parking Design worked closely with the city, community members, BART, regional bicycle coalition, and other project team members. Weekly coordination meetings were held during design and construction, when various issues were discussed and resolved. The structure was constructed by local area contractors, resulting in shorter commutes and re­duced environmental effects.


“The new Center Street Garage is an exciting addition to the Downtown Berkeley arts and mixed-use district. As our downtown develops, arts patrons and downtown visitors are welcoming this striking and convenient supply of parking.” —Denise Pinkston, vice chairperson, Zoning Adjustments Board, City of Berkeley.

“Unexpected in more ways than one, Berkeley’s Center Street Garage is the rare example of an unloved building type done in a way that’s a visual treat. If it nudges a few cities or public agencies to demand higher standards from the next round of parking structures, all the better.” John King, urban design critic, San Francisco Chronicle.

“The idea is to make downtown more pedestrian friendly.”
Farid Javandel, transportation manager, City of Berkeley

“We love that the new Center Street Garage has such a striking design! From commuters, merchants, and residents, we’ve been hearing that it is the best-looking building in downtown Berkeley. It’s bright and spacious, built with an open-air concept. The compliments just keep pouring in!”
Danette Perry, CAPP, parking services manager, City of Berkeley.

“The greenest parking garage in California. Downtown Berkeley is moving forward.” Jesse Arreguin, mayor, City of Berkeley.


The garage contains a multitude of sustainable features, including 500 solar panels on the roof, electric-vehicle charging stations, recycled materials, rainwater catchment, and stormwater treatment vege­tation. Rainwater flows through 8,000-gallon cisterns that irrigate landscaping and planters adjacent to the garage. Energy-efficient sensor-controlled lighting, recycling receptacles, water-conserving restroom fixtures, and paints with low volatile organic com­pounds are also incorporated. The garage elevators are equipped with LED lighting and door-drive motors that can enter standby mode when not in use. The garage is expected to receive Parksmart Gold certifi­cation. Natural ventilation, building systems commis­sioning, and an energy-efficient mechanical system with HVAC controls are other sustainable features incorporated throughout the garage. The roof struc­tural system can accommodate the addition of future solar panels over the entire rooftop level, and the con­duits are run to a microgrid distribution network at the ground level for electricity distribution to other essen­tial city facilities in the area.

Read the article here.

CALI YANG is marketing manager with International Parking Design, Inc. She can be reached at cyang@oc.ipd-global.com.


Transportation Key to Costa Rica’s Green New Deal

By Paul Wessel

Costa Rica wants to be the little country that could by becoming fossil-fuel-free by 2050.

Its greatest challenge?  Transportation.

Transportation is the largest single source of Costa Rica’s greenhouse gas emissions. The number of cars and motorcycles on the roads is growing fast, according to a survey by nongovernmental group State of the Nation. The average car in the country is 17 years old. Congestion is a huge problem; morning traffic in the San José metropolitan area moves at an average of less than 10 miles per hour. Afternoons are worse.

So we learn in the New York Times: Tiny Costa Rica Has a Green New Deal, Too. It Matters for the Whole Planet:

Revamping transportation is expensive and so it will require tackling things that have little direct connection to climate change — fixing the country’s fiscal health, for one, to be able to secure big foreign loans to fund such an ambitious project, and lowering unemployment, which is a pressing political demand. It also means addressing the aspirations of its upwardly mobile people.

The story goes on to describe the two-hour commute ordeal of a furniture company manager.  Her goal to improve her quality of life?  Save up enough to buy a used Suzuki subcompact.

It’s worth reading the full story, enjoy the wonderful photos, and chuckle at the first-world zinger at the very end.

Paul Wessel is director, market development at the U.S. Green Building Council.

Sustainable Garages in Wood

Rendering: H3D

When’s the last time you saw a parking garage that featured wood as a primary construction material? Thanks to advances in technology and research, it may be coming to a facility near you.

Engineered wood is strong, sequesters carbon, and produces significantly less greenhouse gas emissions during production and transport than more traditional garage materials, and it’s warm and inviting to boot. Cross-laminated timber (CLT) and glued-laminated lumber (glulam) can be effectively used for super-strong, sustainable parking facilities, and it’s a trend that’s catching on.

This month’s The Parking Professional features an in-depth look at engineered wood, including a look at a real garage being built with it. It’s a great story you won’t want to miss. Read it here and let us know–what do you think of wood in garages?

The Green Standard: I Was Going to Recycle, but …

By Yasser Jabbari

YOU ARE LATE FOR WORK. You are carrying the breakfast that you some­how did not spill on yourself navigating through morning traffic. As you speed-walk through the parking lot, you come to a set of trash and recy­cling cans that have words on the front of them that you never really have time to read. What you do notice is that the trash cans have swinging doors on them, which means one of the hands being used to eat your breakfast is going to have to touch that door before you can throw away some of the trash from your car. Instead of doing that, you leave the trash on top of the container and never think about it again.

What was just described might be happening right now in any number of parking lots around the world. How do we convince our customers to act re­sponsibly with the trash they bring into the parking lot? On the other end of it, are we giving customers the right oppor­tunities in the right places to complete a sustainable act? A lack of trash cans or the wrong type of cans will negate any conscious effort to do the right thing.

Offering the Right Stuff
Disneyland has trash receptacles ev­ery 30 feet in any direction. They have figured out that people are only willing to walk 30 feet to throw out trash. They also have only two receptacles at any location: one for trash and one for glass and plastic bottles. The user’s choice becomes very simple at this point.

If you come across five different trash receptacles, are you going to stop and look at every single one to figure out which gets your half-eaten bagel and which gets your coffee cup, or are you just going to throw it in the trash and make peace with the compromise that it did not end up on the ground? The small impediments we as operators put in front of our customers will make or break whether a person makes the right choice.

The example given above was actual feedback our department received from customers in our parking lots. When it came time to replace the garbage can lids, the new ones were selected be­cause they had open lids that made it easy to just drop the trash in—no touch­ing with one’s hands.

Along with accessibility and ease of use, sustainability needs to be driven with education, ideally before a customer even arrives at the parking facility. Operators can take advantage of the recycling and trash norms most people adhere to that dictate how to discard refuse in the right way. But do we know what happens to that trash after it leaves our facilities?
What was once recyclable is no longer recyclable, and a well-meaning customer in a parking lot who thinks he or she is doing the right thing may not actually be at all. We need to make sure that the customer has the proper information so he or she really does the right thing. This goes hand-in-hand with easily accessible facilities that make the proper choices possible.

Consider pizza boxes. A pizza box is made from cardboard; cardboard can be recycled, so that goes into the blue recy­cling container. In actuality, because of the grease in the pizza, that box actually can’t be recycled and is now a contam­inant in the recycling can. The same goes for paper cups or plates, which sometimes have plastic or petroleum lining to make them last longer. Contrary to first glance, these items are not re­cyclable and should be disposed of in a landfill bin.

In the end, the interaction between a customer and a trash can or recycling bin is very short and one-directional. To effect any kind of change, people must be educated before they ever come near a trash or recycling can so they can make the right choice.

While I applaud any organization that can effectively compost from a parking lot, most users of our facilities just want to be able to make a simple choice—the right choice—and move on with their day. Can we achieve that with a simple trash can and recycling bin and clear labeling? I believe that most people will use the receptacles as long as we don’t get in their way.

Read the article here.

YASSER JABBARI works in facilities for transportation and parking services at the University of California, Riverside, and is a member of IPMI’s Sustainability Committee. He can be reached at yasser.jabbari@ucr.edu.


Case Study: A Year in the Life

Sustainable parking and mobility projects from 2018.

By Megan Leinart, LEED AP BD+C

2018_12 Case study A year in the life pg 1 2018_12 Case study A year in the life pg 2

Once again, 2018 provided a number of advancements in parking and mobility sustainable projects. We continue to see incredible success and progress in sustainable parking planning, design, construction, operations, and technology. People within and outside the parking and mobility industry have embraced the possibilities of incorporating sustainable concepts and strategies into their parking programs and projects—an idea that once seemed impossible to many. More often, owners and developers are incorporating sustainability efforts and certification requirements into their procurement standards, and many vendors and professional service providers are to using these ideas without even being asked. This year, we saw numerous exam­ples of successful sustainable parking and mobility projects. Here’s a look back at just a few.

Stanford Roble Field Parking Garage
Stanford, Calif.
As urban campuses grow and thrive, green space becomes an invaluable resource that is often lost to densification. Design­ing parking with a green roof is one way to have your cake and eat it too. Stanford University has utilized this approach for a number of parking garages on campus, most recently for Roble Field. To preserve this open grass space where students gather, relax, and enjoy recreational sports, the university developed a 1,162-space parking garage ­underneath it.

Not only did the facility preserve the field, it also virtually eliminated the perception of a below-grade parking structure. To minimize load on the structure, the turf field consists of 24 inches of engineered lightweight soil. In addition to a green roof, the facility is in the process of attaining Parksmart Silver certification. The five-level, below-grade structure pro­vides 52 electric vehicle (EV) charging stations with provi­sions for an additional 84. It offers active recycling programs, ride-sharing incentives, and a shared parking program. Locat­ed near a shuttle stop, the facility adds pedestrian and bicycle linkage and features bicycle parking.

Following the success of this project, Stanford University is pursuing a similar strategy with Manzanita Field, planning an 850-stall parking structure beneath the existing recreational space, featuring basketball and volleyball courts. The Manzanita Parking Structure is also pursuing Parksmart certification.

Nashville International Airport Parking and Transportation Center
Nashville, Tenn.
Due to the tremendous growth in passengers at Nashville International Airport (BNA), the Metropolitan Nashville Airport Authority (MNAA) is planning BNA Vision, a multi-year expansion program. One of the first projects under the program is the Parking and Transportation Center, which opened in November 2018. The center has 2,200 parking spaces and a ground transportation center on the bottom level for shuttles, buses, taxis, and transportation network companies. As with all projects at the airport, the Nashville Airport Experience (NAE), BNA’s customer service mantra, was the guiding principle during design. One of the primary considerations of NAE is sustainability.

The facility is pursuing Parksmart certification and has included several features that help meet this goal and im­prove the customer experience such as:

  • EV charging stations.
  • Tire inflation station.
  • Recycling program.
  • Internal and external automated parking guidance system.
  • Idle-reduction payment systems.

Additionally, MNAA has included features that help reduce operating costs and meet the airport’s sustainable goals, including:

  • Rainwater harvesting for irrigation.
  • Water-efficient landscaping.
  • Lighting system with daylight and occupancy sensor controls.
  • Proactive operation maintenance program.

All of these features plus the additional measures taken during construction, such as regional materials and labor as well as a construction waste management program, have been integrated into the project to create a net positive impact both economically and environmentally.

New Jersey Institute of Technology
Parking Garage
Newark, N.J.
The New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) recently completed a new 941-space parking structure on its campus in Newark, N.J. The facility is an infill project located on a previous parking lot.

The NJIT parking facility is pursuing Parksmart Bronze certification. Sustainable elements include:

  • EV charging stations.
  • Public green space for use of students, faculty, staff, and the community.
  • Natural ventilation.
  • Newark Light Rail one block away.
  • Extensive sustainable purchasing program that includes paper, furniture, parking tags, and more.
  • Vehicle-idle reduction systems.
  • Sustainable maintenance and cleaning procedures.
  • Energy efficient LED lighting.
  • Native, water-efficient landscaping around the garage.
  • Recycling program.

The garage will support the growing parking needs of the campus, serving students, faculty, and staff and accommodating future development plans. The parking structure is designed to support future installation of approximately 14,000 square feet of retail/flex space.

Pittsburgh Gold 1 Garage
Pittsburgh, Pa.
Located adjacent to nearby PNC Park (home of the Pittsburgh Pirates), Heinz Field (home of the Pittsburgh Steelers), and other entertainment and dining establishments, Pittsburgh’s Gold 1 Garage is the first garage to achieve Parksmart Gold certification. The design of this new-construction parking facility showcases the City of Pittsburgh’s sustainability goals and provides a convenient point of access to the popular area for daily, weekend, and event patrons.

Owned and operated by the Stadium Authority of the City of Pittsburgh, the six-level, 1,000-space garage reduced energy consumption by specifying the use of regional materials and diverting more than 85 percent of construction waste from landfills. The facility also includes a single-stream recycling program that encourages patrons to recycle cardboard, paper, glass, and aluminum.

The multi-modal facility is located in close proximity to a number of bus stops and light rail stations, encouraging more sustainable transportation options, and 4 percent of the garage spaces are reserved for fuel-efficient, carpool, or HOV ride-share vehicles. The garage also includes two DC fast-charging stations, a commuter shuttle program for local hospital employees, and 100 bike parking spaces along with a bike maintenance station and bike racks.

The garage features living walls made of native, drought-tolerant plants and perennial vines to harvest rainwater and direct it to screens and surrounding plant beds. Further, the owner included an educational program via large electronic LED displays in the lobby, highlighting sustainable features and fun facts about the garage, including the benefits of green wall plantings and the stormwater capture system.

Obiicev Venac Public Parking Garage
Belgrade, Serbia
The Obiicev Venac Public Parking Garage is located in the Central Zone of Belgrade, near the city’s downtown pedestrian zone. It is part of the public utility (Parking Servis) garage network, which manages 35,000 parking spaces serving the 2 million residents of Serbia’s capital city.

Due to its location in the city’s historical downtown, the architectural design complements the surrounding ambience, while managing to increase the number of parking spaces. In ad­dition to meeting growing parking demand, goals of the project included extensive energy-efficient practices, minimizing the environmental impact, promoting sustainable transportation, and decreasing costs through efficient management.

Some of the innovative sustainability features include:

  • Solar panels.
  • EV charging stations.
  • LED lighting.
  • Recycling program.
  • Natural ventilation of parking decks.
  • Internal and external wayfinding signage.
  • Free rental bicycles.
  • Incentives for drivers of alternative-fuel vehicles.
  • Renewable source generation plant (PV panels) .
  • 92 percent of indoor lighting controlled by occupancy sensors.
  • 98 percent of outdoor lighting controlled by programed timers.

The project also incorporated a number of successful com­munity outreach features and programs, including:

  • Installing a local meeting point with free Wi-Fi.
  • Incorporating placemaking zones for exhibitions, educational, and cultural purposes.
  • Allocating parking spaces for local residents and providing them with subsidized parking.

Originally constructed 40 years ago, the facility’s reconstruction has set a new standard for sustainable parking and transportation. In April 2018, Obilicev Venac achieved Parksmart Bronze certification, becoming the first garage in Europe to be awarded Parksmart certification. The application of Parksmart measures resulted in a 33 percent reduction in operation and maintenance costs.

Cal Poly Pomona
Pomona, Calif.
Cal Poly Pomona’s second parking structure recently earned Parksmart Bronze certification. The 1,800-space parking facility includes a number of sustainable features, including:

  • Solar panels.
  • Wi-Fi.
  • Secure bicycle storage.
  • Automated, dimmable LED lighting.
  • 24 EV charging stations.
  • Ride-share parking.

The facility also serves as a stop for four university shuttles, one of which connects with local transit, allowing students to use alternative transportation to reach the campus.
Michael Biagi, university director of parking and transportation services, says, “It’s the best parking on campus by far. It provides the quickest shuttle service to the center of campus, and I think it will provide the best parking experience for our students. The sustainable features of this structure really have our students excited about what can be done with sustainable design.” Biagi highlighted the drought-tolerant landscaping and state-of-the-art rainwater collection system as two of the features that demonstrate the university’s commitment to protecting the environment.

The $41 million structure was built on the site of a surface parking lot, and university officials went to great lengths through­out the process to ensure that the construction and operation of the structure was as sustainable as possible. The contractor used locally sourced concrete, recycled asphalt to pave the surface lot, and hired local labor to shorten workers’ commutes.

Main Street Cupertino Loft Residences Garage
Cupertino, Calif.
Developed by Sand Hill Property Company, Main Street Cupertino Lofts is part of a newly created, mixed-use neighborhood in the heart of Silicon Valley, known as Main Street Cupertino. Main Street Lofts is the second location in the development. The property includes a two-level, below-grade, 92,000-square-foot parking garage.

The mechanical ventilation system for the Lofts garage is powered by two exhaust fan-motor units with a combined 47.5 horsepower powering respective centrifugal fan units.
Per California code, the garage ventilation system must run 24/7 in a subterranean garage with people residing above it. With no means of control in place and running 24/7, the garage-fan motor units would consume slightly more than 333,200-kilowatt hours (kWh) per year, with a correlating peak kilowatt (kW) demand greater than 38 kW.

The facility’s energy solutions provider deployed its demand-control ventilation system, including 23 BACnet-communicating, carbon monoxide (CO) sensors mounted throughout both levels of the garage. The sensors provide instantaneous feedback to the controller, which then relays speed commands to the garage’s exhaust-fan motors, increasing and decreasing motor speeds based on CO concentrations at a given time. This approach, when deployed with the facility’s proprietary and patent-pending control logic, routinely captures kWh and peak kW demand savings in the range of 95 percent—and, in the case of the Main Street Lofts garage, greater.

Since the time of the building commissioning, real-time data logging of kW consumption shows the garage is limiting the motors’ combined kWh consumption to just 9,200 kWh/year, providing a savings of roughly 324,000 kWh a year. Peak kW demand is being reduced by 37 kW/year, all while the property’s large garage ventilation fans run continuously.

Parking and mobility professionals have seen a significant transformation of the industry, with sus­tainability becoming inherent in every aspect. It con­tinues to be exciting to see all the innovative ideas and products coming out of this industry, and the future promises to be groundbreaking.

Read the article here.

MEGAN LEINART, LEED AP BD+C, is president of Leinart Consulting. She can be reached at megan@leinartconsulting.com.

The Parking Professional: Technology of Parking and Market Disruption

By Jeff Pinyot

THE BUZZWORD IN BUSINESS IS “MARKET DISRUPTION.” The excitement about disrupting a market is that in the first place, we start with a thriving and confirmed market that is in the cross­hairs of investors. Take the parking industry: It doesn’t take much research to acknowledge that parking is huge and profitable, so it’s a market worthy of looking for possible cracks and creases for new methodologies and possible disruption. If it currently takes 10 different vendor or specialty groups, from hangtag suppliers to PARCs providers, to have a functioning piece of vehicle real estate, but only four would be needed through new disruptive technologies, the one who figures out the proverbial Rubik’s Cube would be disruptive and enjoy a lucrative result.

What does market disruption mean and why should you care about it? In layman’s terms, some­thing that disrupts a market is something that chal­lenges the way it’s always been done and threatens its conventional wisdom. Take Blockbuster video stores: Its former stores are now outlets for Hallow­een costumes in October and sparklers in July. The empty storefronts are a reminder of a disrupted mar­ket. Amazon Prime Video, Netflix, and others com­pletely disrupted the video rental business Wayne Huizenga created. Understand, there is still a market for watching movies—in fact a larger market that also includes the new verb “binge-watching.” We watch our entertainment in a more efficient manner. Similarly, parking won’t go away disrupted—it will just be done differently.

I once heard “Shark Tank” investor Mark Cuban say he would invest in any disruptor of a proven market. Look at our industry, for example. Parking reservation apps are huge market disruptors and getting plenty of attention from venture capital firms. When I go to Chicago overnight on business, I stay at the Palmer House. If I park my car with a valet, it’s going to cost me the price of tuition at nearby North­western University. But, if I use a parking app to find a space, I’ll save a bundle. That is market disruption. There will always be an alternative to the posted rate.

What does market disruption mean and why should you care about it? In layman’s terms, something that disrupts a market is something that challenges the way it’s always been done and threatens its conventional wisdom.

Case Study: Pittsburgh
There are three market disruptors in Pittsburgh—three companies building autonomous vehicles. Why Pittsburgh? One reason: the Pittsburgh left (hang on—I’ll explain)! Well, that’s the main reason, but there are others. First, the city’s streets are not in a grid pattern. There are more bridges in Pittsburgh than in Venice, Italy.

Then, there is the Pittsburgh left. Say you are in a left-hand turn lane waiting for a green light, but the light turns green and there is no turn arrow. What to do? Not a problem if you are first in line in Pittsburgh. The first car in line to go left simply turns in front of the oncoming traffic and without anyone getting killed. It’s courtesy in the ‘Burgh to let the first driver through. The autonomous vehicle companies figured that if their driverless cars could do that, they can drive anywhere.

Transportation network companies (TNCs) Uber and Lyft have severely injured the taxi cab market, but they are also affecting airport parking. Smart airport parking operations are finding ways to make money from these disruptors. The reduced cost of TNCs means people who live closer to the airport Uber or Lyft there instead of driving and parking. Everyone has their own equation as to the economics of Ubering versus driving and parking. But on the business side, fees for TNCs to enter airports and defined staging areas that require payment by the TNCs are making up some of the losses.

New Innovations
Frictionless parking is on everybody’s mind in the parking world. What innovation will we see next? One of the big areas the industry has seen growth is in parking guidance systems (PGS). There are many players in that industry, from pucks to ultrasonic to camera-based. PGS can be costly but also can be justified quite easily, as their systems attract parkers to specific facilities. Some operators still guess when the garage is full and put the sign out proclaiming such. I’ve driven by many “full” garages where two or three cars were leaving.

Finding the Right Disruptors
When considering a new disruptive technology, ask questions! Competitors of new technologies might try to sink the claims of new innovators. Claims that wireless technologies aren’t proven, for exam­ple, challenge conventional wisdom, considering almost no one has wired phones anymore and we can stream hi-def videos on our smart devices almost anywhere. The owner who thinks ahead will not only still be in business but will be making more money than ever before. Embrace and be flexible. As autonomous vehicles become common, parking spaces will shrink from nine feet to seven feet wide. Systems will have to adapt—and some already have. Buyers need to think ahead.

Thinking Ahead
Rick West is an alt-use specialist and CEO of the Millennium Parking Garage concession in Chicago, Ill. He is always looking for alternative uses for that massive behemoth. Have an alternative use plan in place so you aren’t left with open space and an emp­ty wallet. Some alt uses are making more money than do parking spaces. As an industry, we should freely share best practices in this area.

A way of protection from empty spaces is right-sizing a garage. In right-sizing, design a garage that is the correct size and is flexible and fluid to the actual needs it will see. The best example I have is a mixed-use property that offers public parking on the lower three levels and gated resident parking on the top five levels. This guess rarely pays off. Rather than gating the top five levels, use a flexible line of demarcation. Expand the resident parking from the top down through a PGS and sell the extra spaces to the public, rather than having empty and unsellable spaces beyond the gate.

Change is good and prepared change is better. What new market disruptors will we see in the next few years? Chicken Little, the sky is not falling, and no, little boy, there is no wolf!

Read the article here.

JEFF PINYOT is president of ECO Falcon Vision IPGS/ECO Lighting Solutions and member of IPMI’s Sustainability Committee. He can be reached at jspinyot@ecoparkinglights.com.


High-Emitting Vehicle? Pay More for Parking

Drivers who park in London’s financial district may look to use transit or upgrade older vehicles thanks to a new regulation that has drivers of high-emitting vehicles paying an extra tax to park.

Because of the district’s adoption of an app that knows the difference between, say, a hybrid and a diesel vehicle, on-street parkers will pay different rates depending on how much their vehicle pollutes the air. It’s not a huge difference–about 11 cents (U.S.) per hour–but enough that the media, at least, is taking notice.  Drivers who opt to pay in cash rather than using the cashless app will also pay the higher rates.

About 8,000 people live in the district and 400,000 work there. Read more here.