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Robotic parking systems could do for urban parking what the Sharper Image electronic tie rack did for haberdashery. Cars are surveyed by laser sensors (for size and body heat — so junior or fido aren't packed away accidentally) before being carried off to a size-appropriate spot by a clockwork dance of interoperating metal stuff. It's a pretty freaking cool concept, actually, but while such systems are already used in Europe, Australia, Asia and the Middle East, the US is playing catch-up. Only two such garages exist in the states, in Washington, DC and Hoboken, NJ, but new ones are in the works in Florida, and plans are afoot for nationwide expansion.

Robotic Parking Garages Plan Driven by Profit [Motor Trend]

Related:
Buy a Tiny Parking Space, Get a Tiny Car for Free [internal]