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How Much Does It Cost to Build a Parking Lot in 2023?

According to data, new parking lot construction in the United States costs around $2.50 and $7 per square foot for both materials and labor. You should budget around $2.50 and $4.50 for asphalt or $4 to $7 for concrete.

However, with numerous variables to consider, it can be quite difficult to come up with the exact cost of building a parking lot. Concrete curbs, painting, leveling, removing old materials, and other factors all increase the cost of building a parking lot.

Parking lots are known to be situated in locations where street parking is not enough or allowed and there is a vast number of automobile traffic.

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Parking may be made available in exterior open lots or in interior secured garages. They are most commonly located in commercial areas, close to airports, near hospitals, adjacent to schools, and near event spaces that attract a large crowd.

When looking to build a parking lot, it is recommended you reach out to your local utility companies, particularly if you are building an underground garage.

Factors That Determine the Cost of Building a Parking Lot

  1. Parking lot use and size

A parking lot meant to cater to the needs of the public will cost more than one built specifically for a business or company. A good number of lots are used for public parking, and as such they are designed to cope with the weight of more cars or even larger vehicles. Additional features and factors that will also impact cost include;

  • Size of the parking lot
  • Number of entrances and exits
  • Medians
  • Curbs
  • Gutters
  • Sidewalks
  • Landscaping
  1. Permitting and city approvals

The expenses associated with obtaining approvals for building a parking lot will most definitely eat deep into your budget, especially if your parking lot is in a historical district or a sensitive area.

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The agencies tasked with providing these authorizations will want a drawing of the proposed project coupled with the precise materials that will be used. Have it in mind that most municipalities in the United States possess minimum requirements for width, handicap accessibility, and the number of spaces.

  1. Site preparation and accessibility

This is another factor to be considered especially if the site has to be prepared prior to the main construction, and this will add to the cost. Sites for first-time constructions in most instances will have to be leveled, graded, or even have material inculcated or removed before any other thing can be done.

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Aside from that, if the site isn’t very accessible owing to things such as trees, lack of roadway, or other factors, getting the construction equipment into the site will mean more expenses.

  1. Paving materials

The expenses that come with the paving materials can be one of your most domineering expenses when buildings a parking lot. Have in mind that the sort of material and its thickness and grade will determine the final cost of building the parking lot.

Also note that the cost of paving materials tends to be steady and doesn’t change that often, but it is possible for it to fluctuate based on the season.

  1. Lighting

It is recommended you don’t compromise as every good parking lot needs adequate light and view. Aside from the fact that it ensures that the area remains safe for everyone, it also makes it look nicer and more professional. Parking lot lights are usually installed on tall poles and can eat deep into your pocket.

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Also note that the expenses that come with the lighting will depend on the wattage of the bulbs, the height of the pole, and installation fees.

  1. Safety and Security

You need to ensure that your clients and their belongings are safe while within your parking lot. Owing to that, you will need to mount cameras and other security features. Cameras are considered a viable solution to monitor the area. Cameras will also discourage would-be criminals.

Also consider alarms, gates, and other security features to ensure that your lot is as safe as possible. Putting all these safety features in your parking lot will cost money but can be a massive benefit for the business.

  1. Local labor rates

This is another factor that will determine your parking lot building cost. Most often, they tend to vary and will depend on the living cost in your intended area. Have in mind that these expenses may make up a large portion of the cost to build a parking lot.

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Working with a reliable contractor that pays their employees a fair wage and showcases quality work will guarantee you get a good job done on the project.

  1. Vital markings and sign installation

Have it in mind that the appropriate markings are very important for your parking area to be up to code. Signs will as well add to the cost of building your parking lot, and bigger lots will most definitely have more of these.


Building a parking lot will warrant substantial investment. However, there are numerous factors that go into planning and building a parking lot and they will most definitely impact the general expenses associated with the project. With such factors that are most often outside your control, it’s necessary that you work with a contractor that is very reliable and trustworthy.