Click to Select
Exit this Topic
Parking Lot Design: Theory and Concepts

Parking Facility Design Process

The goal in designing off-street parking facilities is to maximize the number of spaces provided, while allowing vehicles to park with only one distinct maneuver. It would be nice to present a step-by-step procedure for reaching this goal, but it isn’t that simple. Parking lot design requires balancing a variety of concerns. For example, you might decide on a nice layout for your parking lot, only to realize that you haven’t provided any spaces for persons with disabilities. The next iteration would correct this error, but might very well create another problem. You simply have to hammer out all of the kinks, until you end up with a design that satisfies all of your criteria.

One way to start is to imagine that you are parking your own car in a lot. What maneuvers would you need to make? Knowing that, what needs to be included in the design to make sure all those maneuvers are possible? Use the following list of maneuvers to guide your thinking.

  1. Vehicle enters from street (space provided by entry driveway).
  2. Vehicle searches for a parking stall (space provided by circulation and /or access aisles).
  3. Vehicle enters the stall (space provided by the access aisle).
  4. Vehicle is parked (stall designed to accommodate the vehicle’s length and width plus space to open vehicle doors).
  5. Pedestrians access the building or destination (usually via the aisles).
  6. Vehicle exits the parking stall (space provided by the access aisle).
  7. Vehicle searches for an exit (space provided by the access and circulation aisles).
  8. Vehicle enters the street network (space provided by the exit driveways).