College campuses across the country are working on becoming greener, setting goals to reduce carbon footprint and improve the natural world around them. Some schools have gone so far as to ban plastic water bottles while others reduce electricity use with solar energy. But how about sustainable parking? With myriad students and faculty driving to school and using campus parking lots every day, how sustainable are your campus’ parking garages and lots?
What first comes to mind when you think of sustainable parking are probably green design elements. Popular ones include sustainable paving materials, energy-efficient or natural lighting, renewable energy sources, and improved pedestrian walkways. And all of those are excellent additions to sustainable parking. But a survey on emerging trends in parking found the number one improvement to be something else entirely. And that was parking guidance systems. Parking guidance has the greatest potential to make your parking more sustainable. But how?
What Does Parking Guidance Have to do with the Environment?
It’s easy to focus just on the parking structure when you think of sustainability. But looking at the big picture is the key to creating a more sustainable plan. When people circle repeatedly, looking for somewhere to park, they generate needless carbon emissions and use excess fuel. Guiding them into available parking faster can vastly reduce those. Letting drivers know where parking is available helps them head right into parking spots, instead of contributing to the 30% of local traffic that’s simply looking for somewhere to park.
Is Parking Guidance Really a Sustainable Parking Element?
Having parking data available on apps, your website, and electronic signage is good for the environment. But don’t just take our work for it. Check out this article on sustainable parking that includes parking guidance to speed up the parking process and reduce circulation and idling times. Or this one on the evolution of parking sustainability that includes parking guidance as a green measure. But best of all, check out this chart from parking.org with parking guidance listed as the top way to improve parking sustainability. You need parking guidance for more sustainable university parking. It’s simply the best way to make your parking lot greener.