The National Academies

ACRP 10-03 [Final]

Evaluating Airport Parking Strategies and Supporting Technologies

  Project Data
Research Agency: Jacobs Consultancy, Inc.
Principal Investigator: Peter Mandle
Effective Date: 9/14/2007
Completion Date: 7/1/2009

Parking facilities and operations are vital to efficient and safe operation of airports. Generally, parking is the first and last experience many passengers have at the airport. In addition, parking is typically a significant source of revenue for airports. Many airports rely on parking revenues to finance investments in facilities and equipment.
Airports have many options and alternatives for accommodating passenger parking at the airport, but parking strategies often are complex to implement. There are existing and emerging technologies to assist airports as they implement various strategies. In some cases, the introduction of new technology at an airport is itself a parking strategy to improve revenue control, to provide customer-based services, or to improve operational efficiency.
Parking technologies can be used to maximize the use of existing airport parking facilities, reduce access congestion and air pollution, and increase parking revenues. Parking guidance systems have recently been installed in a number of U.S. airports. These systems use changeable message signs and counting systems to guide drivers to available parking facilities and/or spaces, and, in some cases, these systems allow for kiosk payment.
No single resource document summarizes the available strategies and related technologies or offers airports useful guidance on how or when to implement a particular strategy. Research is needed to assist airport operators in determining the most appropriate parking strategies and technologies for their airports and to assist in procuring and implementing these strategies and technologies.

The objective of this project is to develop a guidebook that airport operators can use to compare and contrast various parking strategies and supporting technologies and then evaluate each for application to individual airport situations and demographics. The guidebook will describe airport-parking strategies, categorize each strategy, offer methods to evaluate each strategy, match existing and emerging technologies that support each strategy, and provide guidance on how to implement each strategy and its supporting technology.
For the purpose of this project, the term “parking strategies” includes, but is not limited to, techniques for control of parking revenue, value-added services, safety and security features, operational efficiencies, traffic flow, capacity management, and facility balance. Many of these strategies can be enhanced through the application of technology. Examples include (a) “pay-on-foot” advance payment, (b) credit card in/out automated lot operation, (c) license plate recognition, (d) way-finding or single-space parking guidance, and (e) automated vehicle identification.

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