4 Things to Consider When Designing Your Parking Lot

4 Things to Consider When Designing Your Parking Lot

Shoppers can easily get aggravated when there isn’t enough parking for a store or if it’s difficult to get in and out of a space. When it’s time to design a parking lot for a store, some very important decisions will need to be made.

Here are four things to consider.

1. Which Company to Design the Parking Lot

Designing a parking lot can be more complicated than it seems. Many studies have been done to determine the best way to set up a parking lot and ways to make it easier for customers to park and to walk to the store.

Reputable civil engineering firms like Cochran Engineering, can help translating retailers’ parking lot requirements into real solutions, as the right company understands the particulars of different styles of parking lots and how to choose the right one for a business.

2. How Many Cars Need to Fit in the Parking Lot

Parking lots can take up a significant amount of space, but the exact amount of space depends on how many cars will need to be parked at one time. Each parking space should be at least 9 feet by 18 feet, with 10 feet by 20 feet being preferable. This allows plenty of room for vehicles to be parked in the middle of the space, as well as for drivers and passengers to be able to exit the car easily.

Business owners should consider the amount of space they have available for parking and look into the number of cars they expect to park at one time to make sure there is plenty of room for each vehicle that may be expected at one time.

Parking lot design

3. How the Cars Will be Parked

Cars can be parked at a 90-degree angle from the aisles, at 60 degrees, or at 45 degrees. Which one is used depends on a few different factors, including the preference of the parking lot owner. Experts do agree that the best option is typically 45 degrees because it only requires a single lane of traffic and it’s easier for drivers to enter and exit the parking space.

4. The Direction of the Traffic

Traffic flow is crucial when designing a parking lot. Traffic must be able to flow in and out of the area easily to prevent backups and accidents.

Parking lots can have aisles that allow traffic to drive in both directions or alternating directions. With aisles that need to handle two directions of traffic, the amount of driving space between parked vehicles should be at least 20 feet. If only one direction of traffic moves down each aisle, this can be reduced to 10 feet.

Alternating directions can lead to issues with people trying to drive the wrong way down an aisle, but it can work well with cars parked at a 45-degree angle, allowing customers to park faster.


Though the parking lot may not seem as crucial as the inside of a store or the products and services offered by a business, the reality is that the easy of parking has a huge impact on the happiness of customers.

Business owners looking to build their store and parking lot can work with a civil engineering firm to work through all of the ideas here and design the best parking lot for their business.

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