Will You See More Angled Parking in Your City?
Parking has become a hot topic lately as cities are slowly diminishing the availability of it downtown. Recently, Boston eliminated parking minimums city wide, which made them the first city to show signs of progression towards a car free atmosphere. Let's not forget, however, how all of these cities are also battling cars. As the continuous battle against cars shows no signs of losing momentum, urban planners are forced to pick a side - either for or against cars. Since that's not easily done, some are simply reconsidering how to accommodate cars in the least obtrusive way as possible - with angled parking becoming the potential answer.
Even though modern angled parking has gathered popularity in North America in recent years, angled parking isn't exactly new - the phenomenon began in Germany in the 1970's and was called 'vekehrsberuhigung" which means 'traffic calming'. When first introduced, it was intended to act as a strategy to slow down traffic. According to Planners Web "angle parking is even better than parallel, as it consumes more space, and motorists must slow down to watch for cars pulling out of their space". Though one of the benefits is that it does slow down traffic, planners are revisiting angled parking today because of its ability to also accommodate more cars in the same space as traditional parallel parking.
According to Anthony P. Chrest, author of Parking Structures: Planning, Design, Construction, Maintenance, and Repair, when comparing an angled parking lot to a parallel 90-degree parking lot that each hold 80 cars, the angled parking lot uses approximately 7% less space. This is because it doesn't require the same amount of space for turning bays like a parallel 90-degree lot. So as a result, it can provide savings on paving costs.
Additionally, for drivers, angled parking is preferred since it makes it easier to park, allows for more space between cars, and provides motorists with a better view of the area while backing up from the space. An even better view of the surroundings is provided if the angled parking is back-in enforced. This means that the drivers must back in to park, so when they go to exit the spot, they are facing oncoming traffic which can reduce the chance of colliding with bikers, pedestrians, and fellow motorists.
Putting theory to practice for angled parking, a pilot project in Winnipeg has introduced back-in angled parking in the Exchange District downtown. The goal of the project is to increase the amount of on-street parking after businesses and area residents demanded that more parking should be added to the area. According to the report in the Winnipeg Free Press, it has changed the way people drive on the street - slowing them and making them more aware of pedestrians. It has also revealed that the angled parking has caused drivers to crowd the existing painted bike lane - luckily, it's an issue that was caught from the pilot and can be addressed. The future of angled parking (at least for Winnipeg) is very much intact.
Interested in designing an angled parking lot? Search 'parking' on CADdetails.com to view products that you can use in your project.