An ‘automated garage’ has opened in the city of West Hollywood, California, that parks cars itself.
The garage and community plaza uses automated parking technology as a way of increasing parking capacity for a growing city. The garage requires a much smaller physical footprint than a conventional parking structure would, and the space saved has allowed for a 7,000 sq ft community plaza to be built; to host community events such as concerts, readings, meetings and festivals. Nearly entirely worked by robots, the car park can hold 200 cars in a space that used to accommodate just 66.
West Hollywood has struggled with parking capacity as the city has grown. The area around City Hall has had lots of businesses move in over the last few years, which has increased the parking requirement to a level not seen before. The construction of the new car park took two years, and is believed to be the first project of its kind in the US.
So how does this all work? You park your vehicle in an entry bay, and then a mechanical system moves the vehicle to a space suitable for its dimensions. It then retrieves the vehicle when you request it back. Check out the video demonstration below:
As users don’t drive around looking for a space, CO2 emissions are lower than a conventional car park, with predicted savings equivalent to taking 92 cars off the roads every year. The building also uses roof-mounted solar panels for energy generation, and drought-tolerant landscaping.
A glass wall along the east side of the building allows the public to watch the shuttles moving the cars in and out of parking bays.
Have you used an automated car park before? Would you give it a go? Let us know in the comments below!
Author Lex Barber