GBCI’s Parksmart Reaches 100 Registered Parking Facilities

Building owners and parking operators are rethinking parking structure design and operation to support more sustainable mobility.

With the registration of St. Armands Parking Garage in Sarasota, FL, Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI) announced that Parksmart has reached a milestone of 100 registered parking structures. Located across seven countries and 22 U.S. states, these parking facilities account for more than 137,000 parking spaces. As a registered project, the parking facilities are currently pursuing Parksmart certification. Parksmart works with businesses, cities and communities to develop parking structures that encourage more sustainability mobility, reduce the structure’s impact on the environment, and improve access to places.

parking facilities
Located adjacent to PNC Park, home of the Pittsburgh Pirates and Heinz Field, home of the Pittsburgh Steelers, Gold 1 Parking Facility was the first-ever Parksmart Gold certification.

Parksmart is a performance-based certification that recognizes new and existing parking garages for smarter, more sustainable siting, design and operations. It provides property owners with a framework to build higher performing parking facilities that better serve the environment, customers, and improve access to places people want to be. Registered projects are pursuing certification utilizing green building strategies that help reduce costs, encourage alternative modes of transportation, reduce CO2 emissions, and conserve resources.

“Our mobility networks are shifting and it’s drastically changing the way we move around our cities and neighborhoods,” said Paul Wessel, director for Parksmart. “Registered Parksmart projects are committed to pursuing certification and are reimagining the role parking structures can play in helping us transition to a more sustainable mobility network.”

Parksmart has certified 24 garages in the U.S., Canada, China, and Serbia and serves all space types including universities, airports, commercial office buildings, parks, sporting venues, and more. Certified parking facilities encourage alternate modes of transportation like biking, walking, or public transit; reduce idling time and emissions in parking garages; increase access to electric vehicle charging stations; and reduce energy consumption through improved lighting and ventilation systems.

“The value to Cal Poly Pomona is unmeasurable,” said Bruyn Bevans, LEED AP, Senior Project Manager, Facilities, Planning, Design & Construction, Cal Poly Pomona. “The number of Faculty and Students that join the University because we strive to make our University’s built environment less impactful on our existing stretched resources while still providing the best level of service is limitless. A stronger Faculty and enrollment requests help make us one of the leading Universities in the nation. We will continue to strive and set a positive influence upon others in our industry.”

“There’s definitely a ripple effect to this,” said Tim Hoppenrath, Impark, Parking Manager for Brookfield Sliver Spring Metro, DC Metro-area. “I tell people about green garages, and they look at me like, ‘Green garages? Really? What are you talking about?’ Then I go into it. They’re like, ‘Oh, wow.’ You put hands free readers in garages, so it speeds up the egress process. There’s less emissions and stuff like that. These are things that you may or may not be doing now. When you go to purchase new equipment, why not look into it?”

Facility managers interested in Parksmart can download the Owner’s Checklist to get started with the certification process. To help teams learn more about certification, Parksmart is leading an education session at the Greenbuild International Conference and Expo on Thursday, November 15. The session will explore how parking structures have found triple bottom line benefits through certification.