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16 CHAPTER 2 Constrained Airport Parking Environment Airport parking becomes constrained when the demand Lack of supply at an individual parking facility--Con- for parking spaces exceeds the available supply. The nature strained parking occurs when individual public or employee and severity of parking constraints vary from airport to air- parking facilities do not accommodate the demand for park- port depending on factors that affect the balance between ing at those facilities, while other facilities have excess capac- supply and demand. These factors include total parking sup- ity. For example, during peak leisure travel times, such as ply relative to total demand, the allocation of parking supply weekends and holiday periods, a short-term or daily parking relative to the demand for specific parking products, airport facility may have excess capacity while the economy parking operator policies pertaining to providing and operating park- facility is constrained. This scenario differs from the previ- ing facilities, the availability of alternatives to driving and ous scenario in that the total airport parking supply may be parking at the airport for both airline passengers and airport adequate to accommodate total parking demand, but the employees, and external policies affecting the airport. The allocation of supply among facilities does not meet demand. types of constrained parking, causes of constrained parking, Imbalanced allocation of parking supply--Parking allo- and related consequences are discussed in this chapter. cated for specific uses does not accommodate demand dur- ing certain periods while parking capacity for other uses is sufficient or underutilized. The distinction between this Types of Airport scenario and the previous scenario is that multiple parking Parking Constraints products or uses may be allocated to one facility. For exam- Because it is impractical to manage a parking operation at ple, many airport operators issue parking permits for air- 100% occupancy, airport operators typically define parking port employees to use terminal area public parking. Other as constrained when occupancy exceeds a set percentage of airport operators designate a section of terminal area park- capacity, based on operational experience. This percentage is ing for short-term parking, with the remainder designated referred to as the "functional capacity" of a parking facility or for long-term parking. parking system. The functional capacity of parking facilities varies by airport, but generally ranges between 85% and 95% Parking constraints may occur occasionally or on an ongoing of supply. Regardless of the specific percent defined, once an basis. Ongoing parking constraints typically occur on a airport operator considers parking to be constrained, the oper- weekly basis during busy periods whereas occasional parking ator will make decisions related to parking based on this prem- constraints result from nontypical events, such as holiday ise. It is the point at which the airport operator acts in response periods, school vacations, or other events that generate non- to the functional capacity constraint that is the key to defining routine spikes in airline passenger activity. Strategies to address whether or not an airport is operating in a constrained parking ongoing and short-term parking constraints are discussed in environment. Generally, public and employee parking con- Chapter 5. straints result from an imbalance between parking supply and demand under one of the three scenarios that follow: Causes of Airport Parking Constraints Inadequate total parking supply--Constrained parking occurs when the total demand for public parking or Insufficient capacity is only one of the reasons an airport employee parking exceeds the functional capacity of the may experience constrained parking. Constrained parking con- total available parking supply. ditions occur when the balance between supply and demand