> > > >

1947-48 Theatre Catalog, 6th Edition, Page 514 (498)

1947-48 Theatre Catalog, 6th Edition
1947-48 Theatre Catalog
1947-48 Theatre Catalog, 6th Edition, Page 514
Page 514

1947-48 Theatre Catalog, 6th Edition, Page 514

theatres is given in Table 1.

These requirements are applied to theatres in cities of all sizes. Both New Castle, Indiana, population 17,000, and Los Angeles, California, population 1,800,000, requires one off-street parking space for each ten seats in the theatre. Clayton, Missouri, with 15,000 inhabitants, and Arlington, Virginia, population 125,000 have imposed the same requirement upon theatreseone off-street parking space per four seats.

The requirement of parking spaces based entirely upon the street frontage occupied by a theatre is open to question. The capacity of a theatre does not vary directly with the street frontage occupied. Many large theatres are so constructed that they have no street fronte age, but are entered from arcades which run through buildings. Such an arcaded type of theatre would be required to furnish a minimum of off>street parking facilities for patrons whereas another theatre with similar capacity but with different construction features might be required to provide substantially more. Obviously, parking demands will vary with the capacity of the theatre, therefore such an ordinance would not furnish a satisfactory solution.

The major parking demands of a theatre are normally after the closing time of other business establishments in the same section of the city. For this reason, it is sound to allow theatres to take advantage of off-street parking facilities used by other business establishments during the day. Frequently these parking facilities are not in use during the early evening hours when recreation trafiic in the city is at its peak, and when demand for parking space by theatre patrons is great.

Detroit, Michigan, is considering a revision of its zoning ordinance relating to theatres which will provide that Snot more than fifty (50) per cent of the offstreet parking facilities required for theatres may be supplied by off-street parking facilities provided for other kinds of buildings or uses not normally open, used or operated during the principal operating hours of the theatrefi

Space Needs for Cars

Any plan to provide parking spaces for theatre patrons must consider the overall space available for such facilities. Into- this overall figure may be divided the area required to park one car in order to obtain the capacity of the pro TABLE 2*Off-street area requirements of cities to store one passenger vehicle.

Square Feet No. of (Vities

Per Car Reporting Per Cent 125 1 3.2 126 1 3.2 144 1 3.2 150 3 9.7 160 3 9.7 180 2 6.4 200 13 42.2 220 1 3.2 240 2 6.4 250 1. 3.2 300 2 6.4 400 1 3.2

Total . . . . . . . . . . . .31 100.0

TABLE 1-Parking Requirements for Theatres.

No. Cities Per Reporting Cent


1 Parking Space per 4 seats... 17.1 1 Parking Space per 5 seats... 1 Parking Space per 6 seats... 1 Parking Space per 8 seats. . . 1 Parking Space per 10 seats. 1 Parking Space per 12 seats. 34 Parking Space per 10 seats. Space equal to iioor space. . . . . 1 space per 200 square feet

NHHrPHV-ehiibl.m H


floor area . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 2 8.1

1 space per 10 feet frontage... 1 4.1 nAdequate" . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .. 5 21.0 Total . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .24 100.0

posed facility. Information on this subject has been collected from several cities and is discussed below.

Of the 70 cities reporting zoning ordinances, 31, or 44 per cent, submitted answers to the question: uHow many square feet are required or are considered necessary to provide storage space for a private car?" The answers to this question varied over a wide range, as shown in Table 2.

Two hundred square feet per vehicle is the most common requirement and this was found in cities of all sizes.

Several cities, particularly those with lesser area requirements, have ordinances which require smaller storage areas and tiadequate space for entering and leaving? An ordinance so worded leaves the final decision to the land user who in many cases does not have a clear understanding of the requirements of a vehicle. Since the land user is interested in reducing costs, he will, in all probability, allow an absolute minimum of space for such maneuvering, and when the public uses the facility it will require more space which will be obtained at the expense of storage area. Thus the capacity of the lot is decreased. A better plan is to base the requirements on a definite number of square feet for each parking space. This overall figure should be suliiciently large to insure ample room for maneuvering. It must also be remembered that requirements vary widely for different shaped areas and different parking arrangements.

Various plans for parking may be found in the (tTrafiic Engineering Handbook."3

Si'l'e vs. Building Served

Forty-two cities have definite restrictions concerning the location of the parking facility in relation to the building served. Of these cities, 24, or 57 per cent, require the parking facility to be located on the same parcel of land as the building. The remaining cities allow the parking facility to be located at distances up to 1,500 feet from the building served. This information is summarized in Table 3.

An interesting relationship is shown in Figure 2 between the size of cities and the maximum distance from the

3Trnfllc Engineering Handbook. Hammond and Soronsen, 1941. Available from the Tnsiiluto of Tramc Engineers. Strathcnnn Hall. New Haven, Connecticut.

building to be served at which parking facilities may be located. In 77 per cent of the cities with populations from 10,000 to 25,000 the parking facility'niust be on the same lot as the building served. In the other cities in this population group, the maximum distance which the buildings and the parking facility may be separated is 300 feete the average is 275 feet. Cities with populations from 25,000 to 50,000 require in 77 per cent of the cases parking on the same lot as the building served. All the other cities in this group provide that parking must be within 300 feet of the generator. Cities with populations from 50,000 to 100,000 require parking on the same land parcel in 55 per cent of the cases. '

One city allows parking to be provided within a radius of 1,000 feet but the average of the maximum distances allowed away from the building served is 540 feet. Thirty-three per cent of the cities with populations 100,000 and over require parking on the same parcel of land as the building to be accommodated. The maximum separation permitted is 1,500 feet. The average of the maximum distances permitted between a building and its parking facility is 700 feet.


Parking facilities in many areas have operated as "flyeby-night" enterprises. Patrons7 cars were carelessly handled; damage was done to the body or to mechanical parts; contents were removed; prices were changed without warning. The public in general was given no assurance of receiving fair treatment when patronizing parking lots.

In order to cope with this situation it has become necessary in many cities to enact ordinances regulating all phases of the construction and operation of parking lots. Detroit, Michigan, was among the first icities to adopt such an ordinance, effective in 1928. Since that time many other cities have enacted similar ordinances. The experiences of several years of trial have caused the original ordinances to be revised many times so that there are in existence today ordinances which contain all information necessary to the proper regulation of parking lots. Much time and effort may be saved by a thorough study of such ordinances before any contemplated parking facilities are constructed. A brief review of the types of controls are discussed here. Much of the informae tion contained in the following discussion appeared in the Traffic Quarterly,

TABLE 3-Distance from building at which off-street parking may be provided.

No. of Cities

Distance in Feet Reporting Per Cent Same land parcel 24 57.0 200 2 4.8 300 9 21.4 400 1 2.4 600 2 4.8 800 1 2.4 1100 2 4.8 1500 1 2.4 Total . . . . . . . . . . . . .42 100.0

1947-48 Theatre Catalog, 6th Edition, Page 514