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Maximize Parking for Optimal Retail Land Value

written by
Jack Joers

Parking is not trivial.

In retail, it’s one of the most important aspects of site planning.

It’s what drives the value of a site for retail projects.

Retail brands and developers look for the best parking efficiency to get the most store square footage on a site.

Parking: More Than Just Lines on a Plan

Parking is not merely lines on a plan or boxes in a row, nor should it be an afterthought. In reality, parking significantly drives the value of retail projects.

Every development type across the country has required parking ratios.

Even though some areas are starting to relax these requirements for residential properties, the foreseeable future still mandates parking for all developments.

Parking design is not simply about meeting regulatory requirements; it’s about optimizing the space to enhance accessibility and convenience.

Properly planned parking can increase foot traffic, improve user experience, and ultimately boost sales for retail stores.

The Impact of Parking on Density and Value

Parking is typically the limiting factor for the density of residential, office, and especially retail developments.

Retail developments generally require an average of 5 stalls per 1,000 square feet. This translates to each parking stall supporting 200 square feet of rentable area.

For example, in a market like San Diego, each parking stall can unlock nearly $4,000 in annual NNN (Triple Net) rent. With a 6% cap rate, this means that each stall could add approximately $66,000 in value to the property. 

Similarly, for multifamily projects, even a modest requirement of one stall per unit can have substantial value implications. With a developed unit value of $323,000 for just one additional stall, efficient parking design substantially impacts the development's overall valuation.

Efficient Parking Layout = Real Money

Accurate parking design involves more than just counting spaces; It involves careful consideration of several factors:

  • Stall Sizes: Different types of stalls (standard, compact, ADA-compliant) must be appropriately sized to meet regulatory requirements and accommodate various vehicle types.
  • ADA Compliance: Ensuring that enough ADA stalls are available and properly located close to the entrance.
  • Turn Radii: Efficient turn radii facilitate smooth traffic flow and account for emergency vehicles as well as accurate parking counts.
  • Ramping and Elevation Changes: Properly designed ramps and elevation changes can maximize space utilization and improve user experience.
  • Cores and Green Islands: Integrating cores and green islands can enhance the usability,  aesthetic appeal, and environmental sustainability of the development.
  • Entrances and Exits: Strategically located entrances and exits improve accessibility, reduce traffic bottlenecks, and route more foot traffic to retail stores.

Taking all of the above elements into account is not only crucial in creating a more efficient and user-friendly parking layout but getting these elements right early on directly translates to real monetary value in retail projects.

Leveraging TestFit for Optimal Parking Design

This is where tools like TestFit come into play. TestFit generates parking layouts automatically with the necessary criteria above, ensuring optimal use of space and maximizing land value.

Maximizing parking efficiency maximizes retail land value. It’s a simple idea, but it’s hard to do in practice, especially when most are still designing parking manually.

Leveraging advanced tools like TestFit you can back into the highest land value in minutes by leveraging TestFit’s real-time parking AI. The resulting plans will have optimized parking designs, maximized land value, and ultimately drive greater returns on investments.

Need help implementing TestFit to drive retail land value? Get a consultation with the TestFit team today.

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