Is Parking Back?


Is Parking Back?

Is parking back? Will the recovery be a “V” or a lopsided “S”? The answers to these questions mean jobs, profit, and in some cases survival. Parking Today reached out to industry leaders and received encouraging news. In some cases it was counterintuitive.

An owner in Chicago, for instance, is seeing parking in his facilities at 65% of normal. Not too shabby considering that two months ago it was in the single digits. This is in the face of only about 35% of the office workers that feed his garages have returned to work. “Its fear of riding the trains,” he said. Many of those coming to work are driving and helping in the garage occupancy.

The vast majority of workers in downtown Chicago ride the Metra. And most of them, who are coming to work, are now driving. “We have companies we have never heard of calling up and asking for parking spaces.”

Of course his garage in Galveston that supports the cruise ship industry is a different story. “We haven’t parked a car since March, and probably won’t until the fall.”

Chicago’s experience may be different from Los Angeles, where rapid transit is not so pervasive, however operators, particularly in the hospitality end of the spectrum are seeing an uptick. We are told that high end destination hotels near the beach are selling out and people aren’t taking Uber and Lyft, but driving themselves, and that’s good news for the valet industry. Hotels that cater to the business traveler don’t see the same kind of increase. They will be slower to re bound.

Smarking reports the following: The rebound is happening slowly but surely: Miami commuter parking was back to almost 70% of same time last year, Austin 60%+, Boston 60%, Chicago 50%+; On_street parking has been back to 50% for 4 weeks nationwide, and online parking searching is back to 50%.

The bottom dropped out on the 15th of March. We are now four months in to this (I know it feels like four years) and things are turning around. If we can just keep our betters from screwing it up, we will come out just fine.


Picture of John Van Horn

John Van Horn

One Response

  1. Washington DC is problematic. Making it worse, the liberal Mayor that runs this city has given on street parking free to everyone.

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