High-tech parking at T5

31 Oct 2007 by Mark Caswell

Terminal 5’s car parks will have a number of high-tech services when they open next year. The terminal will offer more than 7,000 spaces, designed to “take the guesswork out of parking at the airport”.

Among the facilities at T5’s short stay car park (located within walking distance of check-in according to BAA) is a “Car Finder” service, aimed at helping lost customers locate their vehicles when returning to the car park. They will be able to input their registration details at kiosks, allowing CCTV cameras with number plate recognition technology to narrow down the vehicles location to a specific zone.

A similar service called Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) will help pre-booked customers gain quick access and exit from the car park, while BAA says that bay monitoring will enable drivers to pinpoint spare spaces and reduce queuing and congestion.

The short stay car park will have a total of 3,800 spaces, and will also offer valet parking, allowing passengers to drop their car off on the terminal forecourt, and collect it from just outside arrivals. The remaining car park spaces will be provided in two off-terminal locations, which BAA says will be “a short distance from the terminal and served by frequent courtesy coaches”.

The announcement follows details of the new Heathrow Express service to T5 (see online news September 19), with BAA eager to promote services it believes will “help passengers arrive at the terminal relaxed and stress free”. There will also be space for 150 motorcycles next to the short stay car park, while for the more energetic BAA says it will provide free parking for bicycles, with new cycle paths connecting T5 to the wider world.

For more information on services at T5, visit

Report by Mark Caswell

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