The Automated Parking Garage is Coming

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 30, 2013 9:59 PM GMT
    Kinda cool and entirely necessary... and pair this with the automated driving systems that will eventually come out...

    http://www.popularmechanics.com/cars/news/industry/sorry-valets-the-automated-parking-garage-is-coming-15964165?click=pp
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    Sep 30, 2013 10:05 PM GMT
    The only problem with this is that when I park my car downtown in the city, I usually come back to it several times before I leave. To store things that I've purchased, to get or leave a jacket, even to change clothes before going out for the evening. Jeez, even once or twice to take a nap. Need access.
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    Sep 30, 2013 10:23 PM GMT
    mindgarden saidThe only problem with this is that when I park my car downtown in the city, I usually come back to it several times before I leave. To store things that I've purchased, to get or leave a jacket, even to change clothes before going out for the evening. Jeez, even once or twice to take a nap. Need access.


    It's a parking garage, not a homeless shelter. icon_evil.gif
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    Sep 30, 2013 10:25 PM GMT
    I'm going to have to check this place out once it opens. Field trip!
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    Oct 15, 2013 3:03 AM GMT
    We have one similar that opened in Trafalgar Sydney in 2002 . It had worked flawlessy since the first day of operation ...

    Automated Parking System engineered and designed by Sky Park AB using the currently owned patented technology of Apex Skypark, Inc. is a seven level parking structure below grade with a 26 story residential building above grade.

    Location – 361 Kent Street, Sydney Australia

    Operational – November 2002

    Capacity – 100 Cars

    System Includes - (2) Robot Trolleys; (2) Vertical Transporters; (2) combined Entry/Modules (1) Rotary Turn-Table

    Building - 26 story residential housing with a seven level below grade parking structure

    Construction Company - Optipark Australia Pty Ltd.

    Application – Residential parking

    Apex Skypark - THE AUTOMATED PARKING SOLUTION




  • pandx970

    Posts: 357

    Oct 15, 2013 5:57 AM GMT
    Meh. Technology is so overrated. How about we just get rid of the need for so many cars. icon_razz.gif
  • kew1

    Posts: 1595

    Oct 15, 2013 10:50 AM GMT
    One in Birmingham (UK) as well.
    http://thecube.co.uk/the-car-park#
  • Kwokpot

    Posts: 329

    Oct 15, 2013 3:11 PM GMT
    We actually have TWO in Philadelphia:

    A Public Garage:
    http://liftparking.com/tour_the_lift.aspx

    In a luxury Condo:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w3vtpGtyw1k
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    Oct 15, 2013 3:28 PM GMT
    pandx970 saidMeh. Technology is so overrated. How about we just get rid of the need for so many cars. icon_razz.gif


    Then you should be hoping for more technology not less. Imagine the day Google automated cars signs a deal with Halo or Uber. The utilization of most cars is under 10% anyway - and as they are able to consolidate information, they can even help to provide "carpooling" options from door from the suburbs to even further reduce the cost of transportation and car ownership.

    Automated cars also mean much greater efficiencies on roads and highways (gone are the days of long pileups and people who don't know how to merge and people who drive with their brake lights always on).

    And now with Automated parking garages... this means cars will be able to be parked much closer to where people will use them (e.g. downtown). It would be even more interesting if existing garages can be converted so that they can carry even more capacity - and it would also save a ton of time of having to drive say 3-4 flights from your space in the garage. Add this all up and we're going to hit "peak cars" soon enough - and after this tipping point, the number of cars on the road could actually fall quite dramatically. And we're not even talking about the substantial improvements that are being made to battery technology + even engines (given how inefficient internal combustion engines are - ie well under 20%)
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    Oct 15, 2013 4:02 PM GMT
    I was looking at one of these in the city last week. Couldn't figure out how it works to get a single car in or out. Maybe the whole stack moves? Hanging around until someone drove out seemed inefficient and sort of creepy. It is installed in a downtown residential tower, so presumably it is for people who rarely use their cars anyway.
  • pandx970

    Posts: 357

    Oct 16, 2013 8:22 PM GMT
    riddler78 said

    Then you should be hoping for more technology not less. Imagine the day Google automated cars signs a deal with Halo or Uber. The utilization of most cars is under 10% anyway - and as they are able to consolidate information, they can even help to provide "carpooling" options from door from the suburbs to even further reduce the cost of transportation and car ownership.

    Automated cars also mean much greater efficiencies on roads and highways (gone are the days of long pileups and people who don't know how to merge and people who drive with their brake lights always on).

    And now with Automated parking garages... this means cars will be able to be parked much closer to where people will use them (e.g. downtown). It would be even more interesting if existing garages can be converted so that they can carry even more capacity - and it would also save a ton of time of having to drive say 3-4 flights from your space in the garage. Add this all up and we're going to hit "peak cars" soon enough - and after this tipping point, the number of cars on the road could actually fall quite dramatically. And we're not even talking about the substantial improvements that are being made to battery technology + even engines (given how inefficient internal combustion engines are - ie well under 20%)


    Versions of these exist throughout the world and they are successful at what they do. Sort cars in to as most space efficient of a space as possible. I'm reluctant to continue though with what you originally post ... that there's a positive network effect for this with automated driving systems.

    Parking is basically useless space when you consider it from a land use perspective. The public would gain more benefit if we didn't need as much parking as we have. The sad thing is that after a certain point, the more parking we have, the more parking we need as this starts to overflow its effects into mode shift away from more space and socially efficient modes of transport--walking, biking, public transit, shared vehicles.

    I guess my premise here is best reserved for another conversation, another forum post. But, greatest efficiency is not found in semi-personal or personal automobiles. Efficiency as measured by volumes of vehicles, yes. But, efficiency as measured by number of people. No.

    These technical, engineering marvels are awesome, but they will not get at the major problems facing society -- they are marginal changes, not the fundamental changes that we need.

    As to your assertion that self-driving cars + automated parking garages + car-sharing will magically deliver us to a post-peak car situation; I'm highly doubtful. There's more elegant ways of achieving a post-peak car situation that will be implementable sooner.

    This type of system *could* work in areas built for this type of transport network...and that's about it. Older urban areas or areas that are more densely built have other solutions which will better serve the public, private investors and government.

    TL;DR: There are other ways of doing it that are much better suited to the context than these two/three systems networked together.
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    Oct 16, 2013 8:48 PM GMT
    If history has proven anything though, command and control type regulations to force certain technologies doesn't work well. The primary problem being that we don't know what the future will bring - and having multiple paths to the same route (ie getting people from A to B) means that people can choose the most optimal route which allows the best technology to win.

    Environmentalists often point to buses or other forms of mass transport as being more efficient but we're close coming to the point that cars will be less harmful to the environment than buses. If you get co-ownership of cars or even just a membership in a service that owns a fleet, then you'll have consumers who have to trade off between having their own car that sits empty and useless for most of the time versus making money far more productively so that you can have the conveniences of a vehicle for a fraction of the cost (or shared ownership as you also call it).

    I do think that this is probably going to be the most elegant solution that offers the most optimal outcome of getting people where they want to go and how they want to go faster and most cheaply.... but again, the solution is better technology - from information to the actual mechanics driving cars. And that's coming.

    The one potential wrinkle will be if regulations get in the way - particularly as incumbents fight back. We already see this in how some cities fight Uber from entering their borders.
  • pandx970

    Posts: 357

    Oct 16, 2013 9:05 PM GMT
    Essentially any technology that scales to production level for cars is also going to work for public transit -- busses, trains, etc. The technology isn't the question I'm posing here. Technology changes, yes.

    However, the question that is often left unasked by technocrats or technologists like you, is does it work in context.

    Automated parking garages work well in dense urban areas where there is currently a need for abundant parking. However, the automobile, even 'greener' autos, do not serve a dense urban area well. Bicycling, walking, and public transit serve these areas even better. For a mini-example look at Groningen:

    Groningen: The World's Cycling City from Streetfilms on Vimeo.



    Now, put the automated car and automated parking systems into context, you'll see less and less *need* for these systems in cities.
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    Oct 16, 2013 9:59 PM GMT
    From an efficiency perspective, it may well be that cars remain more efficient.
    http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2011/09/is-a-bicycle-really-more-efficient-than-a-car/

    Yes, if you happen to live and work nearby and don't actually need to wear a suit to meetings or happen to have a shower at work you can use, and meetings aren't as time sensitive, that is you know if it's not raining or snowing, etc, then maybe biking is for you (of course that generally limits you to jobs that don't actually pay as much in a city).

    But this also isn't really an apples and oranges comparison either. Unless you are relatively close by, it's just not practical. Of course there are bureaucrats and environmentalists who would rather force the choice on others, but this isn't to say it will result in the most optimal outcome of getting people quickly and cheaply to wear they want and when they want.

    The irony though is that the more dense a city, the higher the cost of living it tends to be which makes time even more valuable. I find some environmentalists also neglect to factor this into the equation which means that where they succeed, these cities lose out and decline relative to those who allow people the flexibility to make choices that fit their wants and needs.
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    Oct 17, 2013 6:08 AM GMT
    Ugh. Parking. I learned that a 14 story office tower I worked in cost 30% less to build than the 12 story parking garage next to it (earthquake-prone Southern CA)

    Good chance parking is what's holding back light rail in major metro areas. No one wants a big ass ugly parking garage in their neighborhood, next to the station.

    I've got an idea. Make everyone drive smaller cars. icon_cool.gif
  • pandx970

    Posts: 357

    Oct 17, 2013 5:19 PM GMT
    riddler78 saidFrom an efficiency perspective, it may well be that cars remain more efficient.
    http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2011/09/is-a-bicycle-really-more-efficient-than-a-car/

    Yes, if you happen to live and work nearby and don't actually need to wear a suit to meetings or happen to have a shower at work you can use, and meetings aren't as time sensitive, that is you know if it's not raining or snowing, etc, then maybe biking is for you (of course that generally limits you to jobs that don't actually pay as much in a city).

    But this also isn't really an apples and oranges comparison either. Unless you are relatively close by, it's just not practical. Of course there are bureaucrats and environmentalists who would rather force the choice on others, but this isn't to say it will result in the most optimal outcome of getting people quickly and cheaply to wear they want and when they want.

    The irony though is that the more dense a city, the higher the cost of living it tends to be which makes time even more valuable. I find some environmentalists also neglect to factor this into the equation which means that where they succeed, these cities lose out and decline relative to those who allow people the flexibility to make choices that fit their wants and needs.


    If I remember right, there's a factoid out there that most of the things that Americans go to are within 2-3 miles of their home. The only thing which may not be true for this is work--where people, on average, work 8 to 12 miles away from their job location.

    Public transit often gets at this core work trip, however, most things can comfortably be done on bike and walking even from work (to lunch, gym, etc) or also from home (to errands, school).

    However, the less parking we have, fundamentally, the better off as a society we are.

    The cost of living isn't tied to density. The cost of living is also affected by other things, often perception of the location (factors like safety, 'likemindedness', etc) being the most important.

    Actually the cost may be higher to rent or own your housing, however, often these places have lower personal costs for provision of transport and further there's lower societal costs for provision of services (water, sewer, police, fire, safety, etc).