Green Parking Pay-off Umeå’s Green Parking Purchase Model with a Flexible Parking Pay-off

2021-01-29 14:24:03 sisd 66

Property developers in Umeå need to provide a certain number of parking spaces for cars to receive a building permit for their site. Under the unique ’Green Parking Purchase’ system, Umeå let developers build 40 per cent fewer parking spaces in exchange for a commitment to change the travel behaviour of tenants and reduce their car use by 40 per cent.
The real estate owner’s communication with tenants is crucial, and it is also important that the property owner is driven by genuine interest to test new sustainable alternatives in transportation.

Started 2012 as a pilot project, continuing in RUGGEDISED project.

Objective of the practice

The goal with this solution is to reduce the amount of cars owned in a residential area by 40 per cent compared with the ordinary car parking standard. Instead, inhabitants in the area can use other services in their day-today lives.
This business model has a large potential for upscaling within the innovative Smart City Lighthouse of Umeå. The model can be used in all residential developments with adequate location.

Key stakeholders and partnerships

Key stakeholders: Citizens (tenants) and Real estate owners
Impacts: Gives less traffic, improved air quality and enables further development
Partnerships: Upab (Umeå Parking Company) and Private property owners (like Balticgruppen) together with Umeå municipality and Akademiska hus

Implementation of the Project/Activity


The flexible parking pay-off is a business model whose purpose is to reduce the need for car parking spaces in a specific residential area. With this model the city can reduce the amount of parking, gather the majority of parking spaces in co-usage parking facilities and at the same time get financing for ‘Mobility Management’ for residents in the area. This solution will create behaviour changes that reduce the need for owning a car and instead use other types of mobility in daily life.
To enable and develop this you need:
1. A reduced parking norm and car ownership
2. Good bike storage and paths, possibility to repair bikes
3. Car sharing close by or on the property
4. Located close to good public transport
5. Home delivery of groceries and packages
6. Co-usage of parking spaces
7. Mobility management for residents in the area
When a landowner builds property on his/her land, the municipality requires that the need for parking be catered for within the property. With the help of this business model, the property owner buys him/herself out of the requirement to build the parking, and Upab, the municipal parking company, takes over responsibility to accommodate the parking space in the area.
With this business model, the property owner will receive a 40% reduction of the applicable parking standard in return for taking measures on the property that will make it easier for residents to travel without a car. This may be car pool solutions in the area, delivery cabinet(s) for food products, and so forth. This model also includes a financial sum, to be payed from the property owners’ pay to a so-called “Mobility Management Fund”. These funds have been running for 25 years and are used to encourage behavioral change among residents in the area.
In order for an area to sign up to this type of agreement, certain basic criteria must be met. These criteria are set to identify areas where a reduction of parking spaces combined with mobility management work would be effective, and where fewer people would own a car. If the area is too far from services such as businesses, schools and healthcare centres, the everyday need for car transport will be difficult to influence.

Enabling factors and constraints

Sustainability and replicability


Other sources of information