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What are the Standard Parking Space Dimensions? Fort Lauderdale, Florida

What are the Standard Parking Space Dimensions?

What are the Standard Parking Space Dimensions?

empty asphalt parking lot spaces in fog

Designing a parking lot requires attention to details such as directionality and dimensions. Standard parking space dimensions may vary by location, with different requirements for each city, state, or locale. Always check your local codes before designing a new lot. Where specific rules are not in place, you can use the following guidelines to help determine how to set up your lot and what kind of space to leave for each car.

Parking Space Dimensions

In North America, standard parking space dimensions are 8.5 feet wide and 18 feet long. Though you’ll see some variation, most American parking spots are between 8 to 9 feet wide and 16 to 18 feet long. While these dimensions can accommodate most standard cars, they’re a tight fit for larger vehicles, such as pickup trucks and SUVs. Big box stores that see more of this type of traffic often tend toward larger parking spaces closer to 9 feet wide and as much as 20 feet long.

Larger trucks, buses, RVs, and tractor-trailers need much larger parking spaces. These usually measure 12 to 15 feet wide and 30 to 60 feet long. You’ll see these types of spaces at rest stops. When these types of spaces aren’t available, large vehicles must take up multiple spaces and usually position themselves around the perimeter of the lot.

One-Way vs. Two-Way Parking Spaces

The direction of traffic in a lot determines how wide the aisles are between the rows of parking spaces. A lot with one-way traffic may only need 11 to 14 feet between the aisles. If you have two-way traffic moving between the aisles, you’ll need at least 20 feet of space for cars to drive up and down the lot. Where possible, 24-foot aisles are a more comfortable option.

Angled Parking Spaces

If you have angled parking spaces, this will determine the direction that traffic flows. Angled spaces usually sit at a 30-, 45-, or 60-degree angle. A 45- to 60-degree angle is most common in high-traffic lots. This makes it quicker and easier for people to park. It’s best to leave a 14-foot aisle for spaces at a 45-degree angle and an 18-foot aisle for spaces at a 60-degree angle.

Perpendicular Parking Spaces

Alternatively, you can opt for perpendicular parking spaces at a 90-degree angle that can be approached from either direction. This maximizes the space in your lot, allowing for more vehicles than you’ll get in an angled parking lot. The drawback is that perpendicular parking spaces are more difficult to get into. A 24-foot aisle is the best option for 90-degree parking spots. This type of lot is more common for long-term or overnight parking.

Parallel Parking Spaces

Parallel parking spaces are longer than perpendicular or angled ones. These spaces are usually 19 to 22 feet long and 8.5 feet wide for standard vehicles. Plan to incorporate an aisle at least 12 feet wide between rows of parallel parking spots.

Accessible Parking Spaces

Accessible parking spaces need extra room for features such as wheelchair lifts and ramps. An accessible car parking space needs to be at least 8 feet wide. Parking spots for vans must be 11 feet or 8 feet wide with 98 inches of vertical clearance. All accessible spots need to have a 5-foot-wide access aisle. One of every six spaces must be a van space, and lots with four or fewer spaces must have at least one van-accessible spot.

The Americans with Disabilities Act specifies the number of accessible spaces you need based on the total number of parking spaces in the lot. You need only one accessible parking space in a lot with 25 spaces or less. This increases by one space for every 25 spots up to 100. You need five accessible spaces for a lot with 101 to 150 spaces and six accessible spots for a lot with 151 to 200 spaces. At 201 spots, you need seven handicapped spaces and must add another spot after every additional 100 spaces.

Accessible parking spaces must meet other requirements as well, including:

  • A slope of no more than 1.48 (2.08%) in all directions.
  • A firm, slip-resistant, and stable surface.
  • Signage with the international symbol of accessibility placed 60 inches above the ground (two signs for van spaces).
  • Located with the shortest accessible route to an accessible entrance.

Parking Lot Layout

It’s important to consider the layout of your parking lot carefully before you paint the lines and other markings for the area. In most cases, parking spots are perpendicular to the building, with the aisles running parallel to provide a clear line of traffic to the door. However, if you have a small parking lot with rows less than 130 feet long, it’s often better to arrange them parallel to the front of the building.

If you have a large parking lot, you should provide a cross aisle every 30 spaces for easier navigation. If your aisles are longer than 350 feet, you’ll generally need to add traffic breaks as well.

As you’re laying out your parking lot, make sure to include essential features such as lighting, signage, and cart corrals. It’s important to think about these details upfront so you have ample space to accommodate them. Proper planning and forethought will yield a parking lot design that can last for decades.

Painting Your Parking Lot Properly

Proper parking lot striping is essential for any lot, as it clearly designates the flow of traffic and proper placement of cars. If the lines aren’t visible, your patrons may face safety issues. Uneven striping also presents a problem, as this can result in haphazard parking jobs and general confusion in your lot. It’s best to work with an experienced contractor for parking lot striping. Our team at U.S. Pave uses laser guides and spray shields to ensure optimal results. Call us for a quote today.

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