Parking spaces VS. body count?

Hey all,
I have the chance to expand my floor to almost twice the size to accomodate a lot more people, however, I still have limited parking avalible. And because I am located on a highway there is no option to expand the parking nor let the people park ON the highway.

So, I’m trying to figure out what the “average” is of cars to people so that if I’m not able to have enough parking for more people, why expand?

Thanks all for your help!

Not really sure about the ratio you mention, however, quite often zoning bylaws have a minimum standard…That may mean even if you think you will need the spaces the municipals folks will require them…Good luck…RCS…


At lunch I average about 2 people per car. At dinner it goes to 3.5-4 However, we have lots of 4 to a car and lots of singles, so it really does balance out.

royster13 - I’m going to assume he is in a strip shopping center. When the building was built it was required to have a certain number of parking spaces based on its square footage. At that point, they don’t care what type of tenants go into it. Or at least that is what I experienced in my home state.

Scott I think you are probably right…But better to check in advance rather than doing all the design work and then getting hit when you try to pull a permit…Good luck…RCS…

Well whats the seating capacity now and how many parks do you have? Any shared parking during day/night or both? Have you tracked amount of cars vs. capacity? Shared items"Pizza" can also mean parties driving seperate and meeting up at you place. Well all in all do you need to expand you place? More space=More expenditures and if your not packing it in is it worth it? Ego vs common sense.

Ok, heres the situation…
Restaurat seating area 500 sq. ft. (40 seats) 40 people
Bar seating area 900 sq. ft. (40 seats)

Bar seating + standing room for events in bar area = 100 people

Plan on taking the 900 sq. ft bar area and adding it to the 500 sq. ft. dining area with more seats, about 100 seats.

Then take over the area next door which is 2200sq. ft for the bar area with 40 seats again but with standing room I estimate about 175-200 people packed in.

Now when I have a packed bar on Thur, Fri, & Sat. and full or even 1/2 full resturant… thats around 300 people.

How many parking spots would I possibly need to hold this many people?

Any idea what the sq.ft. of parking area that would be?

Thanks again all!

CHECK THE ZONING REQUIREMENTS to be sure you are covered under the commercial shopping center. Our local zoning requires 1 space per 4 seats in a restaurant . . . . plus 1 per 2 employees. That is for a stand-alone shop. We are bumpkins, though, and most places use gross leaseable area as the standard for parking spaces required.

On a practical level, I would think that 1 per 4 expected patrons would be a starting point, probably ideal would be 1 space per 2.5 patrons at capacity. That can include shared spaces counted from businesses closing before your peak hours.

Sorry, I forgot to mention… i’m not in a minimall, just a long building in which the landlord keeps his back space as a storage area and has been waiting for me to take over/rent out the rest of the building.

According to the “building codes”, I only need 20 spaces lined… anything else is upto me and the landlord.

The major problem i’m having right now, is the fact that the landlord dosent want to pay to have the rest of the driveway paved and lined… because right now after the 20 lined spots are taken up, people start parking all over the place and limit the amount of area avalible to park.


Some sort of space markers like railroad ties or those concrete curbing pieces or sign posts . . . these sorts of things might work to delineate parking spaces somewhat inexpensively

great idea! Where would I get either of those from?

Thanks again!

Home Depot or any other hardware store.