Robot Valets Will Park Your Car At London’s Gatwick Airport

London’s Gatwick will soon start experimenting with an advanced parking system where autonomous robots will ferry vehicles into parking spots at the airport’s long-term lots.

CNN Business reports that the soon to be used robot comes with a large bed stretching out from its front, that slides beneath a vehicle and lifts it off the ground. The robot then easily whisks the vehicle into a free parking space.

The airport hopes that the robotic parking system will allow it to cram in far more vehicles into the same amount of space than it currently does.

The robots themselves come from a company called Stanley Robotics. The intriguing little machines have previously been tested at France’s Charles De Gaulle Airport and Lyon Airport.

What could possibly go wrong…?

Gatwick Airport’s trial will run for three months and replace 170 traditional parking spaces with 270 spots which the robot valets can transport vehicles into. Those using the service will drive their vehicles into one of eight cabins, make a parking reservation and leave their vehicle. The robot valet will then transport the car to a spot.

For added convenience, the robots have the flight details of all users and can bring the car back to a cabin when the passenger lands.

Construction crews will upgrade the parking facility between April and August to remove any obstacles that could confuse the robot valets. Such upgrades will include repairing cracks and getting rid of obstructions like light posts.


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  • TheAmerican2point0

    I’d prefer to park my own car not have some stupid robot do it for me.

    • Loquacious Borborygmus

      Who wouldn’t?
      Now if it was a clever robot…

      • TheAmerican2point0

        Lol you know what I mean

  • Maximilian Norlande Rabbitt

    I get that they might have the robot park the cars based on what might be convenient for a schedule (if they don’t, they probably should), but what happens when someone shows up unexpectedly early and they need their car? People need to learn patience, yes. But unless there is another robot available to move any other vehicles out of the way, that could be majorly time consuming for some. This is one thought that sounds good on paper, but doesn’t pan out as well in real life. I would’ve thought the automated garages would’ve at least become popular before anything like this showed up. :/

    • Stephen G

      Also, what if 80 people get off a plane, show up at the lot and expect to get their car at the same time.

      • Maximilian Norlande Rabbitt

        Exactly! It’s not as efficient as it seems on paper. People won’t want to wait when they could’ve taken a golf cart to their car in the parking lot and left already, even though they’d have to wait for even that.

    • brn

      A reasonable concern, but who says there aren’t a dozen robots? The same issue exists with human valets?

      See the video that tseventy6 posted above. They can link into the flight database, to ensure your car is ready. If you show up early, a few robots can scramble to get your car out.

      It probably has it’s flaws, but it also has potential.

  • no25

    Yeah, no thanks.

  • BlackPegasus

    Yay the future 😃

  • Howfarr

    Is the robot having ‘eyes’ suppose to make me feel better about its ability?
    Because it doesn’t

  • Bash

    Well, at least we will know that no one will take it for a joy ride or even worse, changing the presets!

  • DMax

    Reducing the risk of some doofus swinging his door and denting or chipping the paint on the sides of my car, I’m all for it.

  • S3XY

    Because no human has been able park their vehicle which has 4 wheels for the past century

    • Jarosław Kotowicz

      Well by seeing daily many idiots that aren’t able to park their vehicle between two two lines I can say it has enough sense.

    • Big Black Duck

      you are wrong buddy…. I think this would benefit disabled people, women and families the most…if you are against this you should be also against auto pilot in cars which tesla is in the forefront of.

  • SteersUright

    Wow, that cool!

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