Designing an efficient parking lot layout is a delicate balance between maximizing your space and providing your customers with a safe environment in which they can drive, park and walk. And in order to do this, business owners must consider a variety of factors, such as planning, safety and legal requirements.
Parking Lot Considerations
According to the Virginia Asphalt Association, you should consider the following factors before starting construction on your business’ parking lot:
Overall Design/General Planning
When deciding on your parking lot design, you’ll need to consider:
- Where will the heaviest traffic be?
- Will you have designated parking for trucks and buses?
- Will medians and cart corrals take up space?
- Will there be special truck lanes for loading areas or dumpsters?
These factors play a crucial role in determining how thick the pavement should be in certain areas.
To design a parking lot layout that provides the maximum number of spaces, the VAA also recommends:
- Using rectangular areas
- Making the longest sides of the parking area parallel
- Including parking spots along the perimeter
- Using traffic lanes that serve two rows of parking spots
45°, 60°, and 90° are popular angles for parking spaces, but the most commonly used angle is 60°. It allows for wider traffic lane widths without sacrificing ease of entry or exit.
When deciding which angle is best for your parking lot, it’s also important to consider the type of business you own. 90° spaces allow you fit more spaces in your lot, which is useful for long-term parking. 45° and 60° angles are better suited for short-term parking, like at fast food restaurants.
Legal requirements, such as accessible parking, should also be taken into consideration when designing a parking lot layout.
You can find the ADA requirements for accessible parking here, but always check with your state as well. ADA requirements can vary by state.
A big part of parking lot safety is making sure your parking lot is equipped with the proper outdoor safety solutions, such as bollards, cart corrals and sign posts.
When it comes to your parking lot, don’t skimp out on the details. Check out McCue’s innovative outdoor retail products and ensure your parking lot layout is up to par.
Virgina Asphalt Association: http://www.vaasphalt.org/parking-lot-design/
Minnesota Asphalt Pavement Association: http://www.asphaltisbest.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/MAPA-Asphalt-Paving-Design-Guide_Chapter4.pdf