Parking Advisors’ team has its roots in Chicago. We have a proven track record of success in Chicago’s submarkets including the Chicago Loop, River North, River West, North Michigan Avenue, South Loop and the Gold Coast.
Chicago's Leading Parking Consultants
Parking Advisors is a national parking consulting firm that is headquartered in Chicago, giving us extensive knowledge about Chicago's parking market.
Chicago’s Public Transportation Network
Chicago has three main public transit modes:
- Passenger Trains – The Metra serves the Chicago metropolitan area and is the fourth busiest commuter rail system in the United States by ridership.
- Rapid Transit – The Chicago Transit Authority’s “L” is a light rail system that serves Chicago and some of the surrounding suburbs.
- City Buses – The Chicago Transit Authority has 1,864 buses that provide service to 10,768 bus stops.
Chicago’s public transportation system impacts almost all parking garages in Chicago’s submarkets. However, the impact is larger for some assets than others, depending on parking facility’s proximity to primary transportation hubs. For example, buildings near Union Station and the Ogilvie Transportation Center have historically needed lower parking ratios because the trains that stop at these two stations provide efficient and fast transportation to and from many of Chicago’s suburbs.
Parking Submarket Supply
Chicago has submarkets with a low supply of parking spaces and other submarkets with a significant amount of supply. For example, the Millennium Park Garages as well as several other large garages provide an abundance of parking supply in Chicago’s East Loop. Parking Advisors analyzes the supply and demand fundamentals of each parking facility it works on to understand the potential risks and upside opportunities.
The three main parking aggregators in the United States were founded in Chicago. Therefore, a meaningful amount of demand is generated from these sites. Two of the three parking aggregators charge very high commissions and have a significant negative impact on the value of parking facilities. Parking Advisors collects sales and commission data and recommends steps to use alternative sales strategies to maximize online sales revenues and mitigate the high commissions the two vendors charge.
Chicago has some of the highest and most complicated parking taxes in the United States. Beginning on January 1, 2020, the State of Illinois started imposing a statewide 6% tax on hourly daily and weekly parking and 9% for monthly parking. Cook County charges a 6% tax on fees paid for parking for a 24-hour period or less and charges a 9% tax on weekly or monthly parking. The City of Chicago charges 22% for daily parking during the week and monthly parking. The City of Chicago’s parking tax for daily parking on the weekend is 20%. Parking Advisors evaluates the taxes paid by the parking operator to ensure they are accurate and helps ensure that during the diligence process that the correct parking taxes are modeled.
Union Wages & Burden
Almost all of Chicago’s parking employees are members of one of two unions. As a result, the cost of parking labor is significantly higher than most markets due to higher wage and burden rates. Parking Advisors studies the staffing hours and responsibilities by position to determine if there are opportunities to more efficiently staff the parking facility.
Event & Night Life Traffic
Chicago has an active 24/7 parking market. Events in Chicago that impact parking demand include sporting events and conventions as well as smaller events at Chicago’s hotels and restaurants. These events typically generate parking from event employees as well as event patrons. Parking Advisors evaluates event traffic by collecting data from the parking system and online sales sites to identify opportunities to optimize event revenue.