Is Semi-Automated Parking the Key to Density?
Some version of automated parking in new developments is going to be integral to both creating density in L.A. and complying with the city’s parking requirements, as they slowly evolve. Automated parking is growing in popularity, but is still seeing slow adoption from real estate owners and developers. That is likely because there is little known about automated parking systems, both functionally and financially. Markwood Enterprises, an L.A. developer, has used fully automated parking systems in prior developments, but recently implemented semi-automated parking systems in two density-bonus developments, Dunsmuir Row in Mid-Wilshire and Elmwood Row in Larchmont.
“Fully automated parking comes with a pretty price, and that price needs to be amortized over a significant amount of units or a very luxurious, expensive project. The price needs to be absorbed somehow,” Simon M. Aftalion, development director at Markwood, tells GlobeSt.com. “When you have smaller buildings, a fully automated system, which is the most efficient system in this realm of automated parking, doesn’t work. The Row projects are in a medium-density zone utilizing a density bonus, and packing on enough density to make one site pencil with 12 to 15 units. If we could evolve a plan set that really works, we can use that plan set again and again. The question was: how do we park them?”