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Changing the Way South Africa Think about Parking Provision at Tertiary Institutions

Authors: M. C. Venter, G. Hitge, S. C. Krygsman, J. Thiart


For decades, South Africa has been planning transportation systems from a supply, rather than a demand side, perspective. In terms of parking, this relates to requiring the minimum parking provision that is enforced by city officials. Newer insight is starting to indicate that South Africa needs to re-think this philosophy in light of a new policy environment that desires a different outcome. Urban policies have shifted from reliance on the private car for access, to employing a wide range of alternative modes. Car dominated travel is influenced by various parameters, of which the availability and location of parking plays a significant role. The question is therefore, what is the right strategy to achieve the desired transport outcomes for SA. The focus of this paper is used to assess this issue with regard to parking provision, and specifically at a tertiary institution. A parking audit was conducted at the Stellenbosch campus of Stellenbosch University, monitoring occupancy at all 60 parking areas, every hour during business hours over a five-day period. The data from this survey was compared with the prescribed number of parking bays according to the Stellenbosch Municipality zoning scheme (requiring a minimum of 0.4 bays per student). The analysis shows that by providing 0.09 bays per student, the maximum total daily occupation of all the parking areas did not exceed an 80% occupation rate. It is concluded that the prevailing parking standards are not supportive of the new urban and transport policy environment, but that it is extremely conservative from a practical demand point of view.

Keywords: Parking provision, parking requirements, travel behaviour, travel demand management.

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