With the limited supply and soaring prices of parking spaces in Hong Kong, some owners have adopted the sharing economy model to rent out their parking lots on specific days for a fee.
In Tsuen Wan’s industrial area near the Sha Tsui Road and Chai Wan Kok Street, hk01.com has discovered that some parking lot owners have posted advertisements for motorists to “co-park” at their spaces.
One of the parking spaces on offer is at One Midtown on Hoi Shing Road, where the owner has decided to rent out the space from Tuesday 2 p.m. to Friday 2 p.m. every week.
This means if another car owner is willing to pay HK$1,500 per month he or she will be able to use the parking space for 12 days a month.
When hk01.com reporters contacted the owner about the co-parking space, the owner told them that it has already been rented out.
Parking lots in Tsuen Wan are commanding high prices because there is just one public car park near the Tsuen Wan MTR station and it is always full.
A monthly parking lot at One Midtown can fetch up to HK$3,800 per month and there is no vacancy.
A private parking space at the Cable TV Tower nearby could cost up to HK$4,800 a month, while a space at the TML Tower is around HK$3,500.
As prices soar, paying HK$1,500 a month to secure parking space for 12 days seems a great deal.
According to security guards at One Midtown, the parking spaces consist of hourly-parking lots while those on the first to third floor are all designated for flat owners at the property development.
The guards have a map to record all car license plates, and some parking spaces do have more than one license noted down.
When asked about “co-parking spaces”, a guard said that he has not noticed any so far.
A spokesperson for the One Midtown management office said as long as the owner can give valid information on the cars for registration, it is not illegal to park multiple cars in their parking lot.
The management office would give each car owner at most three Octopus cards for access to the carpark, but only one car can use the space at a time.
Duncan Ho Dik-hong, barrister and a member of the Progressive Lawyers Group, said the owner of the space should tell renters of the penalties for parking beyond the time limit and the limitations for co-parking in the lease.
He urged people who want to rent co-parking space to pay attention to the land lease and the rules at the parking lot to ensure that the lease is legal.
It is also best if the person renting the parking lot can confirm that the owner has the right to rent out the space to avoid possible disputes.
Article originally appeared in EJ Insight on 19 October 2017