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ter or large company or development, it is likewise. If you own a parking operation company or work for one, it’s exactly the same. The folks who drive in and leave their cars in your care pay your salary and for that Christmas turkey you get every year. The folks who provide the garages,

consulting, systems and equipment that enable all of the above to do their jobs are in the same boat. They receive payment from monies that are collect- ed, in one way or another, from those who park their cars while going about other business. And, last of all, we here at Park-

ing Today are paid by those who pro- mote their products in our pages, and that money all comes from only one place: parking. So thanks to all you who drive

and park and pay for the privilege to put your cars in our care.Without you, this $15 billion industry that employs more than half a million people would not exist. So when you eat that Christmas

feast, or watch the bowl games or Rose Parade on that big-screen TV, remem- ber just where it came from. Maybe when we fight the crowds

on the day after Christmas to return and exchange those gifts, give a nod or a smile to all those parked around you. They will be confused, but you won’t. You know whence your holiday came.

Is Automated Parking Beginning to Stir? There has been some activity over

at the Automated and Mechanical Parking Association. After a couple of dormant years, the group has had a conference call meeting and is moving to assist in code changes that could help move the projects forward here in the U.S.All to the good. An entry by Pete Goldin over at

ParkingWorld’s Blog (see below) tells about Robotic’s success in Dubai, UAE. It’s not a pipedream; I have seen it, in person. It is working, and the oth- er Middle East project noted (more than 1,000 cars) is nearly completed. I have seen that one, too. There is a third project that has begun construction. Take a minute to read Pete’s input.

A lot is going on. There also is an article by Don Monahan in January’s Parking Today

that lists all the current systems in the U.S., both under construction and com- pleted. Check it out. Not too many moons ago you could count all the automated systems in the U.S. on one hand. Now there are nine completed and six under construction.WOW! Now if only we could putHoboken,

NJ, behind us. The manufacturers are still squabbling in a who-did who-said who-stole who-failed conversation about the first automated garage in the U.S. It seems to me that the best thing that can happen is that we all move on. The time has come for those who think that they are right to keep their counsel and get on with life. Every continuing negative word about the Hoboken proj- ect hurts the entire industry.

Return of the Robots Robotic Parking Systems (RPS)

opened the Middle East’s first robotic car park in Dubai, UAE, in August 2009. The car park, located at Ibn Bat- tuta Gate – a shopping, hotel and office complex in Jebel Ali – is a suc- cess for RPS, especially when the con- struction is compared with the compa- ny’s last robotic parking project in Hoboken, NJ. “The Ibn Battuta Gate car park

actually took less time to build than the previous garage, despite an increase in size from 324 spaces to 765 spaces,” said Constantin Haag, Chief Operating Officer, RPS. “The Hoboken garage was started in 1999 and completed in 2002. The Ibn Battuta Gate garage was completed in half the time even though it was more than twice as large. “The major part of the garage

construction was well in hand when the economic downturn hit,” Haag added. “While it may have slowed down the overall project to which the garage is attached, we dodged the worst of it.” Those familiar with the Hoboken

project may ask: What has changed? Why did this project go so much faster? “There are two factors in play,”

Haag explained. “First, is simply that good quality management means you strive to learn and improve constantly. Robotic Parking pioneered the return of automated parking to the U.S. – first with the demonstration garage in Ohio and then the first new commer- cial project in New Jersey – and the experience gained there and in other

However you look at it . . .

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projects is brought to bear on the next. The second is that there was much

less red tape to deal with in Dubai. That alone probably added a year to the proj- ect in New Jersey.” Haag said that in Dubai there were

absolutely no codes covering this type of technology. Robotic parking was a

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