What would you want in a Parking Solutions Software?

As the first simple, AutoCAD solutions software gets close to release, I am back to the drawing board of what is next.

I will be starting a software application with the intent of assisting you to accomplish site design – specifically parking lots.

I have TONS of ideas but I thought this is a great place to ‘brainstorm’. (I don’t know why but I hear the voice of the janitor talking to his brain trust right about now)

So if you could design your own parking lot software, what would it have? What would it be like?


  1. Josh Petersen says:

    Hmm, tough considering arrays works pretty well for me for striping. I would say if you had some way to track the stall count that would be nice, or if you drew a rectangle polyline and the area was optimized for parking stalls at a certain dimension that would be nice.

  2. CAD_DAVE says:

    How do you plan on competing with parkCAD?

    • You mean the software that costs thousands of dollars?

      ParkCAD is great but the cost of the software for the tools seems quite inhibitive for what it provides. My goal is to provide the tools the majority needs at a cost that makes sense.

      • CAD_DAVE says:

        I’m all for a cheaper alternative.

      • Josh Petersen says:

        Define cheap?

      • CAD_DAVE says:

        Cheap meaning the benefits outweigh the costs. ParkCAD is great but just to save a few minutes here and there and to use it once a month isn’t worth the $1,000+ price tag. Using arrays and offsets seems to get the job done. ParkCAD’s ability to layout a parking lots for you with given parameters to maximize the number of parking spaces is a great enough feature that if I was doing parking layouts all the time it would probably be worth the cost.

  3. Mike Pryor says:

    It would be cool if you didn’t have to start the command again every time you get to the end of a line or curve. You should be able to pick the 2 endpoints of a parking bay, and all the entities in between, whether a single entity or multiple lines and arcs, will get parking spaces.

    If the stalls could automatically update to parking lot geometry changes would be nice.

  4. Cool ideas Mike.

    I definitely like the automatic update (is already on the list)!

    Keep them coming. This is really an opportunity for you to CREATE your perfect parking layout software.
    Keep in mind there is only so much I can do and still keep the cost reasonable (at least for the first release).

    However, let me decide that.
    The crazier the ideas, the better! You just never know unless you ask.

  5. Andrew Coursen says:

    1. Track number of stalls and create customized tables
    a. Total number
    b. number per phase
    c. number per type/size, etc.
    2. Include ADA stalls
    3. Provide check on required number of ADA stalls
    4. Island creation
    5. Toggle on/off bumper stops

    • Being able to select a bunch of stalls and be able to change their properties all at once (like in regular Autocad).
      For example:
      – bumper stops on/off;
      – the distance bumper stops are set back from the kerb;
      – stall angle to the perpendicular (30°, 15° etc);
      – length/width of stall;

      Anther suggestion is whether to show the real width of the lines or not, for display purposes (e.g. when you are zoomed out, you would want thinner lines).

      Or have a ‘magic’ kerbline, that you use as a baseline for sets of stalls. Created like a polyline (continuous lines and arcs), this will let you control all of the items in the first paragraph. Then you can decide whether you want to mirror those variables/settings on the other side of you ‘kerbline’ (e.g. front-to-front 90° parking).
      A prolem I can see with that though is internal arc stalls. Hmmm…

      Disclaimer: I only draw parking lots via normal CAD, so have no idea if these ideas are implemented already in existing software.

  6. Watch ADA stalls – each state is a little different…

    AutLayout for an area would be nice with customizable End Islands together with counts.

    Its just a little hard to beat those dynamic blocks…

  7. Kevin Stober says:

    Price is the big thing for sure.
    We use a built in Survcad program but it is limited.
    It is nice thought to use a polyline for layout you just say what width and depth and left or right.. it draws them along it.
    You need to allow for angle parking.
    And a way to just tell it the number of stalls needed and divide the length.

    And yes a really well built program would take and area and input drive lanes and stalls widths and fit to the area.

  8. Matt Kolberg says:

    Maybe have stall “styles” which are user-configured. It would have a name, say, “Wall-Mart Generic”. And its dimensions, the bumper stops, all that stuff, could be configured within the style. Disabled stalls might have that symbol in there which could be part of the style.

    Obviously, for a given set of defining geometry, if you change the dimensions you’ll get a different number of stalls. This means you pick the geometry and your routine will fill that geometry with stalls. – Just thinking aloud here.

  9. Matt,

    Nice suggestion.

    With any of these tools there is a lot of user configuration up front. Having ‘styles’ to work with that are pre-configured will definitely help.

  10. I’ll remind everyone in this discussion and those playing along at home to be nice. If your comment irks me, it will probably irk the person you’re responding to, and will be deleted.

  11. Tom Berning says:

    Most of my suggestions are already covered but here are a couple.

    Allow flexibility for layer control of entities.
    Have the option to add a cart corral that takes up a space but is not in the overall count.
    Add counts per row in a field or block