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The investment and integration of technology into infrastructure is what creates a “smart city,” but smart city technology is much more than just data centralization and analysis—it’s aimed at supporting growing population projections, economic stability and sustainability initiatives. With carbon-neutral goals and rapid investment in smart city technology projected to reach $327 billion by 2025, the construction industry will need to be prepared to stay ahead of these emerging trends.

Investors in smart cities prioritize several elements in new projects including positive ROI, sustainability and quality of life. Automated parking will play a key role in reaching these ambitious goals. It’s one critical piece to making smart cities smarter; these solutions are a solid, long-term investment aimed at creating a better future.

Essentially, automated parking technology uses robotics to store and retrieve vehicles in a secure facility. Without the need for walkways, ramps, or stairwells, these facilities have 60% greater vehicle capacity than a traditional parking garage.


Here are three reasons why it’s time cities, developers, and builders should make the switch to automated parking.

1. It’s great for the bottom line

Something as mundane as parking touches nearly every part of our everyday lives. In fact, parking infrastructure directly impacts the economic viability and crime rates of entire communities. With automated parking systems, not only is it a smart investment for developers and architects, it's a direct and valuable investment into a community. Automated parking has the following benefits.

  • Cost-effective: Automated parking technology is designed for long-term reliability, making it an ideal positive return on investment.
  • Space-efficient: Automated parking systems use space more efficiently than traditional parking facilities, typically fitting twice as many vehicles in the same space—therefore increasing profits for further development or future investment.
2. It’s better for the environment

Automated parking systems contribute to net-zero carbon goals and is the only environmentally friendly option in the world of parking. Simply put, the future of our smart cities depend on sustainable solutions, especially in highly populated urban areas where most people in the world will migrate by 2050.

Upgrading or building new parking systems through automation has proven to have positive environmental impacts including the following.

  • Reduced emissions: Cruising around looking for an open parking spot is not only frustrating for drivers, but harmful to the environment. Automated systems eliminate this, reducing emissions by up to 80% compared to traditional parking garages.
  • Less land use: Automated systems significantly reduce the land needed for parking, allowing for more green space, which significantly impacts the health and quality of life in communities.
  • Integrated electric vehicle (EV) charging: Half of all vehicles sold in the United States have to be electric by 2030 to meet climate goals, following the lead of many European countries. Automated parking facilities can be integrated with EV charging capabilities, and with more EVs coming into the market, it’s a necessity for the future of the parking garage.
3. It’s easier for drivers, builders and building owners

Investing in automated parking systems is undoubtedly a smart business decision that is profitable, improves communities and is eco-friendly. Beyond the economic and environmental impacts, automated systems make it easier for building owners and developers, and their customers. Here are a few benefits.

  • Parking apps: Many automated parking systems offer user-friendly features like an integrated parking app. This means drivers can use their smartphone to retrieve their vehicle, get a live countdown to when their car will be delivered and to what transfer cabin.
  • Increased safety: Parking garages are the most likely settings for violent crime out of all commercial facilities. Automated systems eliminate public access to parking garages, significantly reducing crime, property damage and vandalism.
  • Aesthetically pleasing: Automated systems make it possible to reinvent the way we build parking garages. Without the need for bulky, concrete structures, automated facilities can instead complement historic main streets or modern smart city-scapes.
  • Adaptive reuse: Automated parking facilities can simplify the design of structures making it easier for adaptive reuse of a facility in the future if required—recycling already established real estate—or even easily converting some or all of the automated parking into automated storage.

As cities get smarter, so should how we park. Automating the parking process can be a huge step forward for the building and construction industry—it’s time we take the leap and meet these future challenges, and opportunities, head on.

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