Today I stumbled upon a real interesting page in the Guinness Book of World Records: The largest automated parking facility. The Emirates Financial Towers in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, can store up to 1,191 cars over 9 floors, and move up to 6 cars in or out every minute! This Automated Vehicle Stacker was built in June 2011 and can control a maximum of 360 cars per hour.
The parking tower has levels both under- and above ground: Four underground levels, one on ground floor and four levels up. The surface is about 35.5 x 98 meters and it has a height of 22.5 meters. The intelligent parking system doesn’t make use of hydraulics or pneumatics, but is fully electro-mechanical. Therefor all the movements are smooth and quiet.
The only thing you have to do when you want to park your vehicle in the Emirates Financial Towers, is to park in the transitions bay and leave the vehicle. The computerized parking system identifies the storage space and then moves the vehicle to an open parking space. When you want to leave again, the system picks your car up and places it back in the transition bay.
But why do they call it an intelligent parking system? Because it remembers a drivers parking history. This means that it remembers how long you usually park your car. Based on your parking history, the system will move your vehicle towards the transition bay a few minutes before your standard departure time.
I also found a Youtube video of this amazing mix-use parking facility.