Netintegrity Blog

Property Management Considerations for the New Age of Transportation: Part 2

By Sandra Zimmerman

Property Management Considerations for the New Age of Transportation 2In last week’s blog post, we reviewed the challenges that existing condo and multifamily communities face in their efforts to accommodate the growing number of electric vehicles on the road, while looking ahead to these challenges being compounded once autonomous vehicles hit the mainstream.

Bicycles & Scooters

The use of bicycles and scooters in densely populated urban settings is becoming more prevalent, as residents become more conscious of saving money and reducing their personal impact on the environment. However, the irony is that many condos and multifamily communities make it very challenging and inconvenient for their residents to use these forms of transportation on a regular basis.

For instance, in numerous communities, bicycles are not permitted to be stored on balconies or transported in elevators. Yet the storage options available are often inconvenient and not very safe for persons or possessions. I have heard many horror stories from my condo-dwelling friends about their expensive bicycles being damaged in crowded bike racks, or stolen from out-of-the-way locations that are neither protected from the elements, well lit for safety, nor monitored by security cameras. Such a scenario can feel like unjust punishment for being physically active and environmentally responsible.

Likewise, although a more environmentally-friendly alternative to the automobile, scooters and motorcycles are often frowned upon in multifamily communities, with some banning them completely and others enforcing inconvenient parking rules.

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Car & Bike Sharing Services

In a similar vein, car and bicycle sharing services are becoming more commonplace, and can be a very attractive amenity to offer residents in an urban setting. The good news on top of this is, since the vehicles can be shared between a number of different residents, fewer parking spaces will be required overall.

Walking & Public Transit

And of course there are those who chose urban condo living so that they wouldn’t have to worry about the expense of vehicle ownership or where to park these money pits. Create the best possible experience for your resident pedestrians by ensuring that your property pathways seamlessly connect to municipal walkways, and ensuring that they are well lit and well maintained for safety (i.e. free of broken pieces, broken glass, ice, snow and other obstacles).

Given all of these recent developments in the realm of urban transportation, new development designers, condo boards and multifamily community managers would be wise to re-visit traditional rules and parking configurations to develop policies and infrastructures that address the current needs of their target market while also proactively considering emerging trends. In the case of accommodating various forms of transportation this would likely include:

— an adequate number of EV charging stations (enough to accommodate current and near future needs, with the infrastructure in place to add more as needed)
— fewer parking spaces allocated to full size cars, and more compact spaces to efficiently accommodate compact cars, scooters, motorcycles
— parking spaces allocated to car and bike sharing services
— easily accessible and ample storage for bicycles that is well lit, protected from the elements

How have you addressed the changing landscape of urban transportation within your communities? Feel free to comment below.

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