My gripe is with the Austin airport parking specifically…I like Austin, it is a very nice city to live in, tons of places to go and things to do. You want music – SXSW, Austin City Limits and numerous live bands playing throughout the year at multiple venues…
You want fast cars – there is the Circuit of the Americas – where in November of each year you can experience a tremendous rush of excitement as you watch 700 hp rocket like cars zoom on the track…
The Austin airport parking has been weird for a long time. I had noticed over the last several years a big problem – the place needs to be automated. There are multiple times throughout a day when you can get to the airport and when you try to park in the short term parking you will find it closed due to the lot being full.
In reality, I have observed on multiple occasions, the lot is NOT fully occupied at all. Earlier this week, I arrived at the airport around 3:30pm – and as I was going to be gone for 2 days decided to park in the near / short term parking. The lot was closed as being full. Off I then went to the long term parking lots – and after leaving my car I decided to walk to the terminal through the short term parking area – Lot A in the map above. As I walked through lot A (observing only 3 parking rows) I counted 18 empty spaces!!! 18 out of approximately 80….!!! How can this be you would ask…? Yes, it is very annoying – here was I, a customer willing to pay the delta of $4 per day more, the parking spots were there (more than just a few), but the airport management system failed us all.
I remember talking with a senior member of Walt Disney Imagineering – specifically about Walt Disney. After he built Disney Park, he was obsessed with finding ways to leverage the assets 24-hours per day / 365 days per year. Why? Well assets are to be leveraged once put in operation!
This notion appears to be lost on ABIA! I really do not understand why ABIA cannot implement a smarter way to monitor and manage their assets! I can immediately see two simple solutions:
- Brute force – ABIA has a minivan that circles the lots for safety and to see if someone needs vehicle help etc. The minivan can certainly take notice of the empty slots – even if you drive through the lot A (and other lots) once every 3-4 hours, you can capture the empty spaces (make note of them) and open the lot correspondingly
- A simple database monitoring system – count the number of tickets issued at entry in the Lot A and subtract the number of tickets paid by cars leaving Lot A – the Net is your available parking capacity!
The result – more $$$ for ABIA and more happiness for us passengers!
What do you think?