Project profile: Forest Home Garage

Nora Knox
Published on: 

Parksmart is the world’s only rating system designed to advance sustainable mobility through smarter parking structure design and operation. Developed by industry experts, Parksmart offers a road map for new and existing parking facilities to use innovative, solutions-oriented strategies. Points are awarded to parking structures for forward-thinking and sustainable practices in three categories: management, programs and technology structure design.

Parksmart garages use energy-efficient lighting and ventilation systems, guidance systems that help drivers find parking faster, idle-reduction technologies, electric vehicle fueling stations, car sharing, bicycle parking and storm water management practices. The high-performance structures, technologies and practices of Parksmart-certified garages reduce energy consumption, maximize performance and minimize waste, as well as encouraging biking, car sharing, carpooling and alternative fuel vehicles.

Forest Home Garage

Ithaca, New York
Owner and Operator: Cornell University
Consultant: Desman Design Management

Constructed in 2009, Forest Home Garage is part of the parking system at Cornell University, which hosts a student population of 30,000 and manages 10,000 parking spaces.This garage contributes to a campus-wide initiative to reach carbon neutrality by 2035 by incorporating energy-efficient measures in the construction of this cast-in-place garage. The 254-space garage encourages bike usage and offers public spaces for placemaking.

Management highlights:

  • Campus-wide parking plan with a demand management including more than 200 percent oversubscription of permits
  • Active member of ITCTC transportation management organization
  • ASHRAE Building Systems Commissioning

Program highlights:

  • Public space placemaking with green space, open courtyards and benches, and hosting of a series of annual events
  • Financial incentives for ride share patrons
  • Bike commuting encouraged with extensive bike parking (12 percent), restrooms, showers and fountains. Extensive campus-wide bike sharing program integrated into garage marketing and operations

Technology structure design highlights:

  • Permit system provides rapid access and reduced exit idling
  • Landscaped areas are populated with water-efficient plantings
  • Highly efficient LED dimmable lighting system controlled by timers and photo sensors

Learn more about Parksmart certification