ParkPlus goes vertical with high-rise parking system

One of the world’s tallest fully-automated parking systems makes life more convenient for residents of the Muse, a luxury oceanfront high-rise in Sunny Isles, Fla. The condominium is equipped with a 26-floor Rack and Rail Automated Parking System, installed and maintained by ParkPlus Florida Inc. With eight parking spaces per floor, the system can accommodate 208 vehicles for the 68 residential units.

ParkPlus’ Rack and Rail system features a parking platform of 8-ft. post-tensioned slabs and all reinforced concrete construction.

“This system is not just one of the world’s tallest of its kind,” explains Gary Astrup, CEO of Dania Beach-based ParkPlus Florida, “it represents the cutting edge of automated high-density parking technology. In a setting like the Muse, it offers convenience and efficiency. In an urban center, where as many as half the cars on the street are searching for parking, it could provide relief from the traffic problem that is congesting many cities.”

The Muse is a 52-story, elegantly slender structure that boasts an optical illusion of movement. Traditionally, many high-rise buildings allocate lower floors to parking. However, Astrup notes that the Muse’s 60-ft. wide x 120-ft. deep footprint was too small to allow for a normal ramp and drive aisle construction. The beachfront of the Muse is entirely residential, with the Rack and Rail system running up the back of the first 26 floors of the building. The system consumes about 35 percent of the floor plate of those floors.

Ryan Shear, principal of PMG and developer of the Muse, also preferred the elevated parking to avoid the likelihood of subterranean flooding in a building so close to the ocean. “We decided vertical was the better solution,” says Shear. “Robotic parking was a better play for this piece, the technology would be beneficial to the project.”

When a resident comes home, the vehicle is handed to a valet, who drives it into one of the two loading bays. From there on, the parking process is entirely automated. The vehicle is then transported by the parking system to an available space on one of the floors. The system measures each vehicle using sensors to assign it an appropriate-sized parking space. There are two different floor-to-ceiling heights to accommodate cars (6 ft., 10 in.; 21 floors) and SUVs (8 ft.; five floors). The main building’s floor-to-ceiling height is 12 feet.

Parking and retrieval of vehicles takes between two and five minutes, depending on location and system availability. Residents can use a mobile phone app to request their car a few minutes in advance, and have the car ready and waiting. Residents of the Muse are happy with the system, Shear reports. By maximizing the available room with automated high-density parking, there are enough spaces for several cars per unit, including the occasional guest.

The Muse automated parking system is a flagship project for ParkPlus, and is representative of high density parking systems becoming more prevalent on the Florida coastline and in the United States.