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Tra 04 Maximum car parking capacity

Number of credits available Minimum standards
Building type dependent No


To encourage the use of alternative means of transport to the building other than the private car, thereby helping to reduce transport related emissions and traffic congestion associated with the building’s operation.

Assessment Criteria

The following is required to demonstrate compliance:

  1. The building’s car parking capacity is compared to the maximum car parking capacity permitted according to the benchmarks in the table below, and the relevant number of BREEAM credits awarded.

    For most building types, except those where stated, the benchmarks vary according to the buildings public transport Accessibility Index (determined in accordance with BREEAM issue Tra 01). Therefore, for these building types the AI must be determined prior to assessing this issue. This is required to ensure that the building’s car parking capacity is relative to the development's accessibility to public transport links.

Building type


Building’s Accessibility Index

No. of credits

< 4 4 - < 8 8

Max. parking capacity

1 space per x building users, where x is:

Business – office, industrial, student residences and key worker accommodation 3 4 5 1
4 5 6 2
Sheltered housing, care homes and supported living facility 4 5 6 1
5 6 7 2
Further & Higher Education 15 20 25 1
20 25 30 2
Other Building – Transport type 1 & 2 3 4 5 1
4 5 6 2
Other Building – MOD (where building users are ‘living-out personnel’) 2 3 4 1
3 4 5 2
For the building types listed below, the maximum number of parking spaces provided must not be greater than the total of the following:
Healthcare - Hospitals (Acute, specialist, teaching, mental health)

One parking space for every four staff, plus;

One parking space for every four beds, plus

Two parking spaces for each consulting, examination, treatment, therapy room and A&E cubicle.

Healthcare - GP surgery, Health centre, Community hospital

One parking space for every two medical staff, plus;

One parking space for every three non-medical staff, plus;

Two parking spaces for each consulting, examination, treatment, therapy room and A&E cubicle.

Pre-school, schools, sixth form, Retail, Prison, Court, Other Building – Transport type 3, Other Building – Transport hubs Issue not assessed for these building types

Compliance Notes





Building users

Where the term building users is referenced in this BREEAM issue it refers to the following, where relevant to the building type:

  1. Staff (who will work within the building).
  2. Students (who will access the building for work or study during a typical academic term-time /semester day).
  3. Residents (who will reside permanently or for a short period of time in the building).


Determining the number of building users If known, or can be reasonably estimated by the design team, client or end occupier, actual building occupancy figures should be used. If an actual figure cannot be confirmed, for example where the building is a speculative development, use the default occupancy rates given in Table 16 in the Additional Information section to determine the number of users.


Variable occupancy Where the number of building users is variable, provision of parking spaces should be based on the maximum number of building users likely to be using the building at any time during a typical day.


Other building type definitions See CN5 in BREEAM issue Tra 01 for a definition of other building types 1, 2 and 3.



Parking spaces set aside for the following building users can be excluded provided these spaces are dedicated for that use i.e. sized accordingly with the appropriate signage/markings.

  1. Disabled
  2. Parent & baby
  3. Motorbike
  4. Car share

In the case of excluding car share spaces, the future building occupier will need to confirm they have an enforceable car share policy.


Parking shared with other buildings

Where the assessed building forms part of a wider site development, e.g. campus, business park, hospital, and parking is not designated to individual buildings, then the assessor has two options:

  1. Assess compliance on the basis of parking capacity for the whole development, accounting for all existing and new users and parking spaces.
  2. Assess compliance using a pro-rata of parking capacity to building users e.g. if the assessed building is occupied by 20% of the development’s total occupants, then attribute 20% of the total parking spaces to the assessed building for the purpose of the assessment.

Schedule of Evidence

Ref Design stage
Post-construction stage

Drawings or relevant section/clauses of the building specification or contract confirming the number and type of parking spaces provided for the building.

Relevant documentation or correspondence from the design team or client confirming the number of building users.

Where relevant, confirmation of the buildings' Accessibility Index (as per BREEAM issue Tra 01)

For healthcare buildings, relevant documentation or correspondence from the design team or client confirming:

  1. The number of patients’ and residential beds
  2. The number of consulting, examination, treatment, therapy room and A&E cubicle rooms.

BREEAM Assessor’s site inspection report and photographic evidence confirming the number and type of parking spaces provided.

Evidence as outlined at the design stage for building users OR a physical check by the assessor of the relevant number of building users (if practical).

Additional Information

Relevant definitions

Accessibility Index
Refer to Tra 01 Public transport accessibility
Care Homes
For the purpose of BREEAM, care homes are those buildings legally required to register with the Commission for Social Care Inspection by the care Standards Act, 2000.
Sheltered Housing
Sheltered housing falls within Class C3 of the Town and Country Planning (use Classes) Order 1987, and can be defined as self-contained accommodation, usually with an emergency alarm system, communal facilities and a resident warden. This includes all sheltered housing defined as “Category 1, 2, 2.5 and 3” in accordance with the 1969 Ministry of Housing and Local Government circular 82/69 and Local Authority Guidelines.
MOD Living-out personnel
This refers to staff that work in the assessed building and are not residents on the M.O.D site where the assessed building is located.

Checklists and Tables

Table 16 Default occupancy rates by building type

Building type and function area Occupant density Building type and function area Occupant density
Business Secure Residential Institution
Office area (including reception areas) 0.111 Cell 0.190
Food preparation area (staffed) 0.108 Reception 0.121
Small workshop / category lab space 0.068 Hall/lecture theatre/assembly area 0.183
Industrial Eating/drinking area 0.141
Food preparation area 0.213 Workshop - small scale 0.048
Industrial process area 0.022 Laundry 0.086
Laboratory 0.107 Classroom 0.183
Reception 0.110 Office and consulting areas 0.093
Warehouse storage 0.009 Food preparation area 0.111
Generic Office Area 0.108 Libraries, Museums, Galleries
Hospitals, care homes Reception 0.095
Reception 0.152 Food preparation area 0.176
Post Mortem Facility 0.050 Hall/lecture theatre/assembly area 0.150
Food preparation area 0.161 Laboratory 0.098
Physiotherapy Studio 0.200 Workshop - small scale 0.062
Bedroom Unit 0.105 Display and Public areas 0.150
Laundry 0.117 Generic Office Area 0.099
24 hours Consulting/treatment areas 0.000 General Assembly and Leisure, Clubs, Theatres
Assembly areas / halls 1.000 Dry sports hall 0.047
Hydrotherapy pool hall 0.100 Fitness Studio 0.132
Industrial process area 0.124 Fitness suite/gym 0.170
Laboratory 0.080 Food preparation area 0.131
Operating theatre 0.125 Hall/lecture theatre/assembly area 0.175
Classroom 1.000 Auditoria 0.341
Diagnostic Imaging 0.100 Ice rink 0.225
Generic Ward 0.175 Performance area (stage) 0.049
Office and consulting areas 0.195 Public circulation areas 0.241
Primary Healthcare Reception 0.126
Reception 0.11 Sales area - general 0.102
Office and consulting areas 0.082 Swimming pool 0.163
Further and Higher Education Workshop - small scale 0.067
Residents Bedroom 0.120 Generic Office Area 0.116
Classroom 0.203 Display area 0.001
Food preparation area 0.096 Community/day centres
Hall/lecture theatre/assembly area 0.202 Reception 0.108
Computer lab 0.231 Dry sports hall 0.047
Laboratory 0.106 Food preparation area 0.143
Laundry 0.105 Workshop - small scale 0.064
Reception 0.112 Hall/lecture theatre/assembly area 0.169
Workshop - small scale 0.068 Office and consulting areas 0.106
Office and consulting areas 0.098 Other spaces/buildings
Hotels Data Centre 0.096
Bedroom 0.094 Server Room 0.096
Food preparation area 0.108 Heavy Plant Room 0.096
Reception 0.105    
Generic Office Area 0.106    

Notes for Table 16 of default occupancy rates:

  1. The net floor area for each function must be multiplied by the equivalent occupant density to determine an overall occupancy for the function area.
  2. Not all potential building areas are listed, only those required to reflect estimated building occupancy for the building type. For example, an office building may have a canteen but it will be the staff that predominantly uses the canteen. The office staff numbers will be estimated using the default occupancy rate for the office area; therefore to include the canteen would result in double counting of occupancy.
  3. If a building type is not listed, occupancy rates for a similar building type or function area may be used.
  4. The above occupancy rates have been sourced from the activity database of the Simplified Building Energy Model (SBEM), valid at the time of this Scheme Document’s authoring.

Calculation procedures


Other information