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Minimum driveway width for 12x30's, need advice

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  • Minimum driveway width for 12x30's, need advice

    I've got 10x20's on 1 side and want to build 12x30's across from them (the demand is for bigger units). The problem is I only have a total of 60' to work with from where the current building is. This would only leave 30' in distance between the 2 buildings? I know it's not ideal, but will it work? Obviously I would build bollards to protect my buildings. Thoughts?

  • #2
    Our drives are 30 feet wide. I really think they could be 100 feet, people will still hit the building.
    Joe Krezdorn
    DAK Self Storage
    Leesport, PA 19533


    • #3
      My question is, with a 30' driveway, will they be able to turn into a 12x30 right angle? It's all the space I would have & I'd really like to build the 12x30.


      • #4
        The 30 foot driveway will and won't work in the following scenarios. Assume you have the zoning Setback figured in addition to your 60 foot.

        a. Will the driveway be really flat? You may need to push boat trailers in, since the boat and the vehicle pulling won't make the turn.

        b. The 30 foot building will be 29 foot 6 inches of space. This will fit all cars and pickups. Boats with tongue of trailer and prop sticking out, will cover most boats. Your big issue is your door Height. Will it be 12 foot versus 10 foot? This is needed for most larger pickups and boats with towers or canopies.

        c. We do 12 x 25 and 12 x 30 and 12 x 40; with offsetting sizes on the other size in a 40 wide building. With 12 foot doors. Out of 17 units we have only had one renter with a Boat that would not have made the turn, but we have 60 foot on that side of the building. So it depends on your customer base and who you are renting to, if they are mainly boats; and if the driveway is really flat and the boat can be pushed in and out.

        Ours filled up fast. Our market is getting tight so we wanted to try something other than the traditional 10/15/20 foot spaces.


        • #5
          If I recall, the minimum drive width for us was 20' for fire apparatus access. My property is basically 60 wide by 1/4 mile long. We did 20' unit, 20' drive and 20' unit to fill the 60' width. I built with no eaves or overhangs, only have bollards at the u-turn at the end of the driveway and have only had a couple of minor mishaps in 33 years.

          I prefer to tell people with trailers that they can't fit in my facility, I don't want people trying to back a trailer into a unit. Seems like a recipe for disaster.

          I'm in a crowded suburb though, so I don't need to cater to trailers to remain full.
          In no way affiliated with Storman software.


          • #6
            Originally posted by bkinvest View Post
            My question is, with a 30' driveway, will they be able to turn into a 12x30 right angle? It's all the space I would have & I'd really like to build the 12x30.
            Do 10 ft wide doors


            • #7
              Foxes Den - I'm more concerned if the 30' is enough to make the turn into the 12x30....??


              • #8
                I dont understand what you mean by "turn into the 10x20"?
                Why cant they just pull up next to the unit to load/unload?


                • #9
                  The wider door would make it easier than an 8 ft door for the vehicle to not hit the door jams. Why don't you lay it out on the ground, 30 ft from one building to the next, put a trailer on your truck or car and try backing into a fake unit marked out on the ground a 12 by 30 with a 10 ft door marked out


                  • #10
                    I'm looking at building 12x30's. These would be for boats & RV's. The question is this: Is a 30' driveway wide enough to pull into at a 90 degree angle? What about back a boat into?


                    • #11
                      IMO, 30' would be very tight if you're talking about a boat that would fill a 30' unit. Full size crew cab pickups are 20' in length to start with, then add a 25' boat on a trailer with a tongue of 3 extra feet beyond the bow, and you're looking at a total length of close to 50'. No way you're backing that trailer in there. I have owned and towed a tournament ski boat of 25', a large pontoon boat of 32, and a travel trailer of 37'.'

                      The tail swing on a boat or trailer with 8' or 10' behind the rear axle won't allow you to hitch the boat at the door, pull forward 15 or so to get the trailer wheels to the threshold, and then cut hard one direction without the tail swing of the boat hitting a jamb or coming very close. Unless someone had a front end hitch, I don't see it happening.

                      The best idea is to plot it out like Foxes Den suggested.

                      Yes, you can pull a car into a 30' unit with a 30' driveway, the trick is to back in so the steer wheels can swing the front around and center it in the opening. It'll be tougher to drive straight in because the rear wheels track inside the steer wheels, but with a regular length car or truck you could do it. I have 19' units with a 20' driveway between buildings, I can get a car backed in with little effort, but most people ask me to do it since I have jambs that cut down to 8'6", there's not a lot of room for error.

                      Trailers are a different story. I would want either a much wider jamb width, or a wider driveway to get centered up. Both as the facility owner and the boat/trailer owner, I'd want PLENTY of room to work with, not just barely enough.

                      In no way affiliated with Storman software.


                      • #12
                        Are you sure you want to build and invest in units for boats and trailers? I have a few that do it, but I cringe everytime I see them. They could do it 99 out of 100 times correctly, but that one time is enough to drive me up a 'damaged' wall. Could you be ok with damaged doors and columns on your brand new buildings?

                        My spacing for the driveways is dictated by the Fire Department so they can swing their trucks around and reach my hydrants on the facility grounds.

                        I would think about uncovered, striped and angled parking so you have very little up front investment (some paint and time, maybe a few extra cameras or parking blocks?), start making profit right away. Also, with an uncovered spot, height does not play into anything unless you have power/telephone running above or lights that overhang. If they hit something, it is each other and they can work it out.

                        I am glad the demand is there for you.


                        • #13
                          The rule of thumb over the years for this scenario is to have 125% of the building width as driveway width, which would be a minimum of 37.5 feet.
                          Terry Campbell
                          General Manager - Self-Storage lending division
                          Live Oak Bank
                          [email protected]


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