UK Startup Paves the Way for Standardised Parking Spaces

The blossoming sharing economy owes much of its success to the simple fact that it connects and empowers people. With the consumer becoming an increasingly willing collaborative participant in the digital rental phenomenon, entrepreneurs have been quick to capitalise on the business potential of tackling everyday irritations.

Ferrari car park

From ride-sharing apps that put an end to cab-hailing, to online chore marketplaces that advertise local odd-jobs, it’s clear that technology is making our lives more convenient.

But as technology replaces old systems that simply relied on advanced planning, for example: booking a specific parking space through an online parking marketplace rather than hoping to find one in an area while driving, we can expect discoveries that highlight industry inadequacies.

This has certainly been the case for, the UK’s fastest growing online parking marketplace. Thanks to its innovative monitoring and support systems in over 250,000 spaces, the size of spaces in commercial car parks could see revolutionary changes.

As cars grow larger, commercial parking spaces stay the same size

You could be forgiven for thinking that cars have been getting smaller in the last few decades. After all, as our knowledge of car manufacturing improves, surely it’s logical that vehicles will become more streamlined, more efficient and require less parts.

But your assumption would be mistaken. In the last 60 years many car models have actually grown by more than 20 percent in width. And surprisingly, commercial parking spaces have not kept up with the trend.

This might go some way to explain the findings from the AA (Automobile Association) that revealed how more than half of motorists damaged their cars when using a car park during the past 12 months.

Responding to a shift in user behaviour that saw drivers clearly preferring not to use car parks, it was that conducted the research into commercial parking spaces that has serious implications for the parking industry.

Standardised parking space

For Harrison Woods, the managing director, size has always been an important factor for motorists looking for the ideal spot. But recently it’s become increasingly crucial.

This is an interesting trend as the allure for users of online parking marketplaces is the variety of locations available: rather than aimlessly searching for that elusive parking space, a prearranged rental agreement could result in a guaranteed great location and ample space.

With a sudden increase in active requests for spacious driveways rather than car parks, the concern for car parks is that they will always be second favourite – even if they genuinely offer a better parking location.

Will commercial car parks become a thing of the past?

The sharing economy could start to render some platforms obsolete. For example, somebody wanting to advertise their odd-job services would benefit far more from joining the online marketplace TaskRabbit than if they advertised in a local paper. Similarly, it’s fast becoming more convenient for everyone to hire their own private chauffeur with Uber than find a taxi.

The emergence of convenient technology doesn’t mean that old platforms will simply disappear however. It’s much more likely that healthy competition from pioneering startups will encourage businesses, old and new, to improve their user experience – benefitting everyone. are leading the way for commercial car parks by calling for the introduction of new universally applicable guidelines that inform the minimum recommended size of parking spaces. Harrison Woods believes that the implementation of a “SizeMark” standard could be the perfect solution for advising drivers of minimum space conformity.

By introducing a SizeMark standard to car parks along with an “instantly recognisable SizeMark badge”, drivers can be sure their cars won’t become the next AA statistic.

Photo credits: David Merrett, Charlie / Flickr


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