Hidden deep below some of New York City’s most luxurious apartment buildings is an exclusive world of futuristic parking spaces where high-end vehicles are parked and retrieved by robotic parking systems.
The high-tech spots are a rare amenity in the Big Apple, and if you want your car to occupy one of these VIP spaces you’ve got to be ready to fork over hundreds of thousands of dollars.
The spots are only accessible to residents of buildings where the apartments will set you back several million, and if you want your car to live there too you’ll need between $300,000 to $595,000 more to score some precious space in the private garage.
CNBC found two buildings in Manhattan offering spots for sale inside a so-called robo-parking garage.
The first is located at 121 East 22nd Street near NYC’s Gramercy Park where a 140-unit condo building developed by Toll Brothers offers 24 automated parking spots.
High above the 22nd St condo’s underground garage is the wraparound terrace of a 5-bedroom duplex apartment that recently sold with a $300K parking spot for $9.45 million.
Earlier this month, Lori Alf, a full-time resident of Florida, picked up one of the rare parking spaces for $300,000 when she purchased the building’s priciest unit: a 5-bedroom duplex spanning almost 3,800 square feet.
She told CNBC the package deal, which totaled $9.45 million, was a gift to her children who are now spending more time in New York.
The sun-drenched living area inside Lori Alf’s penthouse unit at 121 E 22nd St.
Toll Brothers City Living
Now when Alf or her kids want to park the family’s Porsche Cayenne in the condo’s garage they pull up to a kiosk where the wave of a small radio frequency ID tag unlocks access to a subterranean car lair where no humans are allowed.
Pressing a button on the kiosk sends a jolt of life into an empty metal pallet one level below. It slides across a track onto a powerful lift that sends the empty pallet up toward ground-level to meet the Alfs who can then carefully position their car on top of it.
As a vehicle enters the automated system a motion board delivers messages to the driver to assure the vehicle is positioned properly for the parking process to begin.
Before their wheels are whisked away, a set of cameras scan the system’s entryway to confirm the car’s trunk and doors are all closed — and that there are no objects or humans left behind that might obstruct the automation.
When the scanners deliver the “all clear,” the pallet, with car on top, disappears into the floor, pausing briefly as it descends into the basement to spin the vehicle 180 degrees before slotting it into one of the empty spaces.
The system can lift and shuffle two dozen cars across four rows and two levels.
A car parked on the lower level of the automated parking garage at 121 E 22nd St where prices start at $300K per spot.
Retrieving the car is a lot like making a selection from a giant vending machine. Residents swipe their RFID tags once…