Thursday, August 14, 2008

Parking and alternative transportation go hand-in-hand

It is inevitable that at some point in each day the question as to how a parking company can be involved in the promotion of alternative transportation is raised. I thought I would take a minute to address this issue. At Lanier, we recognize that traffic congestion in urban areas is probably the most prevalent transportation problem facing cities today. It is particularly linked with auto centric mobility and the scattering of automobiles throughout a region, which has increased the demand for transportation infrastructures. However, the supply of infrastructures has often not been able to keep up with the growth of mobility. Since vehicles spend the majority of the time parked, auto centric mobility has expanded the demand for parking spaces, which has created parking demand problems in central business districts.

Another important consideration concerning parking is that it consumes large amounts of space. In automobile dependant cities, this can be very constraining as each economic activity has to provide an amount of parking space proportional to their level of activity. Parking has become a land use that greatly inflates the demand for urban land.

One thing is clear. The automobile is not going away soon, but if we can reduce the number of cars traveling into the urban core by just a few percentage points, the entire transportation system will work more efficiently. This includes the parking infrastructure. As a result, Lanier will continue to work with our public and private partners to achieve a greater balance between the auto and other modes of transportation.

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