Alternative Fuel Vehicles and Smarter Parking

February 26, 2020

Parksmart creates opportunities for parking structures to reduce operational costs up to 25 percent compared to the national average through improved lighting, ventilation, controls and commissioning measures.

Parksmart can accelerate the growth of business models integrating connected cars, consumer choice, multimodal mobility, smart parking and intelligent transportation innovations and other rapidly advancing technologies. The program can accelerate the use of alternative fuel vehicles. There are potentially 21 points that relate in some manner to alternative fuel vehicles.

High-performance structures, technologies and practices of Parksmart garages have substantial economic, environmental and social benefits. Certified projects help reduce energy consumption, maximize performance, minimize waste and harmful emissions and encourage biking, car sharing, carpooling and alternative fuel vehicles. Projects utilize energy-efficient lighting and ventilation, guidance systems to help drivers find parking faster, idle-reduction technologies, electric vehicle fueling, bicycle parking and storm water management practices.

Parksmart defines, measures and recognizes high-performing, sustainable garages. It provides a roadmap for new and existing parking facilities to put innovative, solution-oriented strategies in to practice that reduce environmental impact and improve performance. Parksmart’s rating system awards points for forward-thinking and sustainable practices across four categories: management, programs, technology and structure design, and innovation. A total of 248 points are available and projects that receive 160+ are awarded the highest level, Parksmart Gold.

There are potentially 21 points that relate in some manner to alternative fuel vehicles as described below:

  • Measure B9 Alternative Fuel Vehicles: reserving spaces in the garage for alternative fuels (EV, hydrogen, propane, LNG, etc) and/or providing discounts provides up to 6 points
  • Measure B10 Alternative Fuel Fleet Vehicles: converting the parking operations fleet vehicles over to alternative fuels (EV, hydrogen, propane, LNG, etc) provides up to 4 points
  • Measure C5 EV Charging: providing charging provides up to 6 points, depending on the quantity and type of chargers and the number of parking spaces in the garage
  • Measure B8 Low emitting vehicles: reserving spaces in the garage for low-emitting and fuel-efficient vehicles (as defined by ACEEE or EPA Smartways Elite) and/or providing discounts provides up to 4 points.
  • Measure B6 Carshare program: If the vehicles used in the car sharing spaces are hybrids or alternative fuel (EV, etc), then there is a bonus point awarded.

Parksmart, formerly known as Green Garage Certification, is the world’s only rating system designed to advance sustainable mobility through smarter siting, design and operations while using fewer resources. Administered by Green Business Certification Inc. (GBCI), Parksmart is a complement to LEED and other green rating systems. Parking is one of the largest land uses in cities and with the number of motor vehicles expected to reach two billion by 2030, parking structures can be a transformative tool to drive tomorrow’s sustainable mobility network.

This article was written by Marc Lemmond and Daniel Ciarcia, using references from the Green Building Council Parksmart website.