The International Parking Institute (IPI) released its “2018 Emerging Trends In Parking” survey, and a central finding (and perhaps not a surprising one) is that technology continues to have a tremendous effect. Coupled with that finding is the recognition that the scope of work for those working in the parking industry goes far beyond parking cars. The 2018 Emerging Trends in Survey reveals that more than 60% of parking professionals surveyed now identify as “parking, transportation, and mobility professionals,” their jobs increasingly integral to design, management, and operations of parking that are part of the broader movement to ease traffic congestion and create more livable, walkable communities.
Emerging as a top industry and societal trend is the importance of curb management in response to transportation network companies such as Uber and Lyft, which can put greater stress on pick-up and drop-off points.
When asked about autonomous vehicles — specifically, how far in the future will these vehicles have significant effect on parking, transportation, and mobility, 30% of respondents answered 10 years, followed by 20% saying five years. Meanwhile, 45% of respondents feel consumer reluctance will delay widespread adoption of autonomous vehicles.
Parking technology remains a game-changer and tech-based trends include the prevalence of mobile apps that provide real-time information on pricing and availability (nearly 50%), technologies that improve access control and payment (47%), and demand for guidance systems that help drivers find parking (43%).
Those surveyed by IPI include professionals who design, manage, and operate parking and transportation services in cities, universities, airports, hospitals, sports and entertainment complexes, as well as industry consultants, commercial operations, engineers, architects, planners, and equipment and technology providers.
The study reveals a profession whose responsibilities have continued to expand, often encompassing promotion of alternative commuting methods, sustainable operations, bike programs, traffic calming, transit, special events, technology integration, and data collection. According to the IPI survey, more than half of respondents agree that perceptions of their profession have improved during the past five years. Although 40% see increased collaboration between parking, transportation, and decision-makers, answers also provided insights to why architects, planners, and contractors would benefit by working more closely with parking professionals. The “2018 Emerging Trends In Parking” survey can be downloaded for PDF download from the IPI website.