4. The future of parking (near and far)
If the future of personal transportation is scooters and self-driving cars that are most always on the go, that will leave a lot of empty parking spaces open for new uses — such as food delivery hubs or vehicle recharging centers, Axios' Kia Kokalitcheva reports.
Why it matters: The disruption in urban transportation is creating opportunities for innovative entrepreneurs who see value in repurposing the lowly parking space for the digital era.
A number of companies are already reimagining how parking space will be used...
1. ParkJockey: The Florida-based company’s ambition is to sell space access to businesses such as ride-hail, car rental and food delivery.
- To do that, it wants to sell an “operating system” (hardware and software) to garage owners that will turn their real estate into a service that customers can pay to access.
- Late last year, ParkJockey acquired 2 large parking operators as part of a financing round led by SoftBank.
2. City Storage Systems: Best known as former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick’s new undertaking, the company is also in the business of repurposing parking lots.
- It's been buying up properties, including parking garages, that it will turn into commercial kitchens for delivery-only restaurants and other consumer services.
3. SpotHero: The company is focused on a parking spot booking app (for human drivers), but it’s already thinking about the arrival of robot drivers.
- It’s been working with partner lots to upgrade some of their technology to handle autonomous vehicles, which CEO Mark Lawrence tells Axios can also have immediate benefits for human drivers.
- “Every location that we make [AV]-ready today is a better experience for our consumers now,” Lawrence says. “We’ve done studies that show that people are willing to pay more for an automated experience versus one that’s not.”
Go deeper: Kia has more here.