There’s nothing more painful than struggling to find parking at the end of a long commute. Whether you’re circling the crowded lot at work trying to find a space, or backing up into a microscopic spot on a busy city street, parking can easily become one of the more frustrating aspects of owning a car.
Beyond personal inconveniences, cities and employers alike spend millions of dollars to upkeep the need for additional spots. As solo commute times continue to increase nationwide, we’ve seen more and more cars on our roadways. Living in a car-dependent society ultimately creates a need for pricier real estate to house those vehicles once you reach your destination.
With the rise of new mobility, there’s real potential to move further from these sprawling lots and towards new solutions. To understand the developing landscape, let’s take a look at the ways parking impacts our lives and how technology can encourage positive changes to its ubiquity.
Parking is creating pain for our wallets and planet
Parking doesn’t just affect the quality of our commute, it impacts personal and organizational financial metrics—not to mention its implications on climate change.
Organizations that provide pre-tax commuter benefits often cover the cost of their employees’ parking. And for employers with large, growing workforces, it becomes an even bigger financial commitment. In metro areas like Phoenix where real estate is generally more affordable, building a parking structure costs employers about $17,000 per spot. And it doesn’t stop there. Not only will employers foot the bill on initial construction, but they will also have to pay property taxes on the land and cover the cost of ongoing maintenance.
On an individual level, the search for parking costs our employees money and time. A Deloitte study estimates that the average American spends about 17 hours a year looking for parking, resulting in a cost of $345 per person nationally. In major metropolitan areas, these figures skyrocket, placing financial burdens on employees and employers alike.
The prevalence of large parking lots encourages solo-commuting behavior, which undoubtedly contributes to climate change. When employees have guaranteed-parking at the office, they’re far more incentivized to drive alone than they are to take additional forms of transportation. Further, approximately 30% of inner-city traffic is a result of cars searching for parking. This contributes to the 115 million single-occupancy vehicles clogging our roadways and contributing to heightened emissions nationwide.
By reducing the need for parking, employers have the ability to decrease costs, lessen the commute’s impact on the environment, and improve the employee experience all in one go.
Forget parking spots and create opportunities for shared mobility
To move away from a parking-centric model, employers have to leverage digital technologies to help manage the need for parking. Shared mobility, in particular, is opening up opportunities for companies to improve the commute for their employees, save on cost, and build a more promising future for our planet.
When employers invest in transportation benefits, such as transit stipends and carpool programs, they can decrease on-site parking demand. These strategic investments have been linked to dramatic reductions in parking construction costs and can even save employers $500 per employee on payroll taxes.
Shared mobility has proven effective in decreasing the number of cars in employers’ lots. For instance, many organizations have introduced carpooling technology to their employees to encourage shared trips, which ultimately minimizes the growing influx of solo driving.
Any employer has the ability to onboard these ridesharing technologies to transform the way they address infrastructure at their organization and improve the commute and the planet—all in one fell swoop.
Curious to learn more about how carpooling can be the right fit for your business? Reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org today.