What Is The Average Size Of A Car Parking Space?

Last updated on March 20th, 2023 at 12:54 pm

Understanding the different parking space sizes is important if you are planning to park your vehicle somewhere for a period of time. 

Perhaps you are purchasing a new vehicle, you might need to know if it will fit into your parking space safely. 

Car parking space sizes can vary depending on your location.

Certain countries and states have different regulations that detail how large a specific parking area should be.

Location is not the only factor in determining parking space size, there are many other factors that are covered in this article. 

red and white car in parking lot

Standard parking space dimensions

The average size of a standard car parking space is 16 to 18 feet long and 8 to 9 feet wide which is about 160 square feet.

These numbers are not set in stone and can vary based on location, parking area, parking space design (perpendicular, parallel, angled).

During construction, parking space sizes may be reduced so keep that in mind if you are planning to park on a street or in a shopping mall parking lot. 

Parking space size for each country/state

As mentioned, depending on your location, parking space sizes can vary. If you live in the United States, not every state uses the same dimensions for standard parking spaces.

If you are traveling, this is important to know if you plan to park your vehicle in several locations throughout the trip. Check the regulations for each state before heading out.

In the USA, each parking space must be at least 9 feet wide. Although it could be larger.

The average-sized car is around 6 feet wide so you should have around 1.5 feet of space on each side of your car.

This can be a tight squeeze to open your door depending on the vehicle you have.

Examples of standard parking space dimensions per country

  • USA – 9 feet wide x 18 feet long (2.7 meters x 5.4 meters)
  • UK – 8 feet wide x 16 feet long (2.4 meters x 4.8 meters)
  • Canada – 9 feet wide x 17 feet long(2.7 meters x  5.2 meters)
  • Australia – 8 feet wide x 18 feet long (2.4 meters x 5.4 meters)

Certain countries have much smaller cars and parking space sizes. 

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These numbers are for a standard perpendicular parking space.

Angled and parallel parking spaces can be much larger. 

Parallel parking space size

Parallel parking spaces are generally larger than the standard size ranging from 22 to 26 feet long x 8 feet wide.

Parallel parking for compact cars is smaller, normally 20 feet long x 7 feet wide. 

Angled parking space size

angled parking space

Angled parking space size can vary. The angles of the parking space can be either:

  • 30 degrees
  • 45 degrees
  • 60 degrees
  • 75 degrees
  • 90 degrees

These spaces are normally 9 feet wide x 18-20 feet long. 

Parking space designs and markings

Parking spaces are not all the same and can either be horizontal, parallel, or angled. Parking space size is strategically designed taking the following into consideration.

  • Parking lot size
  • Indoor or outdoor
  • Traffic direction flow
  • Types of vehicles being parked
  • Inclusion of crosswalks
  • Pavement vs non-pavement
  • Parking space angles
  • Lighting
  • Landscaping
  • Drainage

Painted parking lines are normally used and are 4 inches wide and up to 18 feet long. Angled lines may be longer.

Parking spaces may also be numbered and no parking areas will be painted and/or a sign put in place.

White and yellow are the common paint colors used but you may also see blue, green, and red.

In the USA, each parking space must be at least 9 feet wide. Although it could be larger.

Special parking spaces (disability, pregnant, vehicle size)

Certain parking spaces are designated for people with a very small car (smart car), or a large vehicle that needs extra space.

These will be marked with a sign or paint on the pavement.

If you are in an area where small cars are normally used, it will be common to see much smaller parking spaces.

A Smart car has the dimensions of 8.8 feet long (106 inches) x 5.1 feet wide (61 inches) so these parking spaces will be considerably smaller than a normal-sized space.

compact car parking space

Other parking spaces are allocated for people with disabilities and/or pregnant. These spaces will be close to the main entrance area of a building and allow for easier access.

These are normally marked with a wheelchair logo either with a sign or paint. There are also parking spaces designated for ambulances, police, fire trucks, and other emergency vehicles.

Sometimes employees will also have a designated parking space. All of these specially designated parking spaces can have different sizes and dimensions that are not necessarily the same as the standard parking space.

In some cases, they are, but not always. 

wheelchair parking sign

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