From the Wall Street Journal:
Quick, Find a Parking Space
Shoppers Too Busy (or Lazy) To Walk From a Far-Away Spot Try Tricks, Tech to Get Closer; Even Valet Gets Swifter
Allison Tan never thought of herself as a stalker. Yet there she was on a recent Saturday, following a man to his car. Her goal: his prime parking spot.
"He was really nice about it," says Ms. Tan, who was shopping with her boyfriend at Garden State Plaza in Paramus, N.J. "He waved me over. It was only through the goodness of his heart that we found a parking space."
Circling around a parking lot hunting for a space is one of most irritating experiences, especially this time of year. Truth is, though, there are usually available spots—most mall lots fill to just 30% to 35% of capacity, research shows. Shoppers in a rush just don't want to walk.
"We rarely see mall parking lots that are full" except for the day after Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve, says Tom Diamond, president of Remote Sensing Metrics, a Chicago-based consulting firm that uses satellite imaging of parking lots to gauge retailer traffic. Lots fill up in an almost perfect bell-curved shape, with spaces at the front and directly opposite the entrance claimed first, Mr. Diamond says....MORE
|Click on chart for larger view and full explanation.|
HT: Economic Policy Journal who has a tip of his own.