Designing parking facilities for autonomous vehicles

Designing parking facilities for autonomous vehicles

Autonomous vehicles will have a major impact on parking facility designs in the future. Compared to regular car-parks that have only two rows of vehicles in each island, future car-parks (for autonomous vehicles) can have multiple rows of vehicles stacked behind each other. Although this multi-row layout reduces parking space, it can cause blockage if a certain vehicle is barricaded by other vehicles and cannot leave the facility. To release barricaded vehicles, the car-park operator has to relocate some of the vehicles to create a clear pathway for the blocked vehicle to exit. The extent of vehicle relocation depends on the layout design of the car-park. To find the optimal car-park layout with minimum relocations, we present a mixed-integer non-linear program that treats each island in the car-park as a queuing system. We solve the problem using Benders decomposition for an exact answer and we present a heuristic algorithm to find a reasonable upper-bound of the mathematical model. We show that autonomous vehicle car-parks can decrease the need for parking space by an average of 62% and a maximum of 87%. This revitalization of space that was previously used for parking can be socially beneficial if car-parks are converted into commercial and residential land-uses.

Key findings

We find that AV car-parks can decrease the need for parking space by an average of 62% and a maximum of 87%.

Square-shaped car-parks can enhance several measures of effectiveness.

When demand is low, the car-park has only two-column islands and when demand is high, the optimal layout becomes more complex.

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