Back to Blog

Parking Expert and UCLA Professor Donald Shoup Joins AirGarage for a Fireside Chat

Renowned parking expert Professor Donald Shoup recently joined as a guest speaker at an AirGarage fireside chat.

We learned Professor Shoup first took an interest in parking opportunistically. While writing his Ph.D on land use in the United States, he realized that parking was the single largest use of land there was. Given the amount of parking in the U.S. (8 parking spaces for 1 person), it seemed like a massive opportunity for further research.

But at the time, nobody was talking or thinking about parking. Professor Shoup’s work has caused parking to become a more popular topic over time and his research also has given us a vocabulary and framework to discuss parking and the impact parking policy has on society for the first time in his influential book, "The High Cost of Free Parking".

Traditionally, parking spaces have been underpriced, leading to inefficient utilization and congestion. However, advances in technology like dynamic pricing offer a solution by adjusting rates based on real-time demand.

The concept involves charging higher prices during peak hours and lowering them during off-peak periods. This approach not only optimizes space utilization but also incentivizes turnover and reduces traffic congestion in busy areas.

One of the highlights of Professor Shoup's discussion was the reference to his influential study conducted in the Westwood neighborhood of Los Angeles, which was documented in his book. Shoup's research shed light on the adverse effects of free parking policies and the potential benefits of implementing dynamic pricing in the area.

A fun fact we we were excited to share with Professor Shoup was that the Westwood research he conducted in the 1980's was on the same streets of two properties AirGarage now manages - Broxton Ave surface lot and the Hilgard Garage!

Professor Shoup pointed out how the Broxton lot is often used for movie premieres due to its proximity to the Fox Theatre, and he was absolutely correct. Our mission at AirGarage is to turn single-use parking real estate into multi-use hubs and transform them for their best and highest use cases. We work with businesses to make renting space as easy as possible, partnering with movie production studios, cloud kitchens, car share providers, scooter companies, and more.

AirGarage’s Broxton Avenue Lot during the Disney+ ‘Driving Home 2 U’ premiere featuring Olivia Rodrigo

Professor Shoup left a lasting impact on the company's approach to parking management. His expertise and research findings encouraged the team to further refine our dynamic pricing algorithms and continue building towards our mission. This fireside showcased AirGarage's commitment to innovation and collaboration, and it marked a significant step towards transforming the parking landscape with Shoup's expertise leading the way.

Get a Proposal

Let us show you how we can increase your net revenue with a
custom proposal for your parking facility.