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Choosing the Right Bollard or Delineator For Your Parking Needs : A Primer

Parking lot bollards

Parking lot bollards serve two primary functions: physical security and visual deterrence. Given the wide variety of bollard and delineator types that are available on the market today, choosing the right ones for your parking lot or business can seem like a daunting task.

There are several factors that should go into selecting bollards for your parking lot , garage, storefront, or walkway. For example, busy parking lots with expensive machinery like ticket machines and camera posts would benefit from heavy duty steel bollards , which provide some amount of collision protection and can help physically stop vehicles from backing into or running over your machines.

On the other hand, outdoor parks and walking malls would probably be okay with smaller, less robust bollards to act as a sort of semi-permanent traffic cones; these types of bollards and delineators help passively direct the flow of pedestrian and vehicle traffic, guiding people toward their intended destination and keeping them away from areas where they are not permitted.

When choosing parking lot equipment and supplies, it’s important to be aware of your situation’s unique requirements. Do you simply require a visual barrier to guide pedestrians as they walk or do you need bollards with stopping power to protect equipment and buildings against collisions? Do you want your bollards to blend in with the surrounding aesthetic or stand out with bright colors? Are you looking for permanent fixtures or ones that are easily detached or hidden?

Below, we’ll examine some of the most common types of bollards and delineators as well as their uses to help you determine which parking lot equipment is best suited to your individual needs.

Steel Pipe Bollards: Security and Versatility

Typically a permanent installation, steel pipe bollards are ideal for protecting the front of your business if it faces a busy parking lot area with heavy vehicle traffic. Having bollards and delineators in place outside your storefront can deter costly damage from low-speed collisions from drivers who are not paying attention or who lose control of their cars.

They can also be used to protect important infrastructures such as water pumps, mechanical security gates, or exterior HVAC systems that are exposed and vulnerable to accidental damage from unwary drivers.

Removable and Collapsible Bollards

Cars crashing into buildings is a surprisingly common problem, according to the Storefront Safety Council,1 which has gathered statistical data on this particular type of accidental collision since 2011.

Placing permanent steel pipe bollards or temporary delineators and bollards outside of your storefront, particularly where glass entryways or sliding doors are involved, can go a long way toward creating a safe environment for customers and employees. They also provide peace of mind for business owners, reducing the risk of lawsuits and damage and keeping insurance costs low.

Available in a wide range of colors, styles, and strengths, steel pipe bollards are the industry standard for protective deterrence and vehicle guidance. They protect your storefront and infrastructure while passively guiding vehicle and foot traffic, paying for the initial investment tenfold, over decades of reduced damage and accidents.

Removable and Collapsible Bollards & Delineators: Maximum Convertibility

For situations where certain areas need to be accessible some of the time and blocked off at others, removable or collapsible delineators and bollards are the best option. While these types of bollards provide less impact protection, they are ideal for creating a visual and physical deterrent when it comes to pedestrian and vehicle access.

Removable and collapsible bollards make it simple to block off parts of a thoroughfare for street fairs, farmer’s markets, or block parties, providing a clear barrier for vehicle traffic while allowing pedestrians access to vendors and exhibits.

In addition, these types of bollards are commonly used for college campuses, public parks, and other institutions which require easy access some of the time but which are closed for certain hours of the day or months of the year.

Furthermore, removable and collapsible bollard posts are great for parking lots with limited access areas, such as permit parking zones and dedicated valet areas; bollards of this nature will keep the public out of the restricted areas while allowing employees to quickly and easily gain access when necessary.

Removable bollards come with a variety of base types, depending on your unique requirements. Some operate via a magnetic base, while others have a more permanent and robust fixed base with a quick-release bolt-on mechanism. When it comes to choosing the right parking supplies, there’s definitely a removable bollard or delineator solution to fit your lot, garage, campus, or warehouse needs.

Slow Stop and Bendable Bollards

Slow Stop and Bendable Bollards: Flexible Deterrence

If your bollards are primarily going to be used as guides for pedestrians and don’t need to be able to withstand impact, flexible Gorilla Post bollards and delineators are a great way to accomplish this. Bendable bollards and delineators come in a variety of styles, and will “give” to a certain degree under pressure.

When you need an ideal solution for loading bays and commercial parking spaces, where foot traffic needs to be deterred but large vehicles must frequently get as close as possible. SlowStop bendable bollards will prevent damage to commercial vehicles while providing a clear barrier for pedestrians and allowing for a margin of driver error.

Decorative Bollard Covers

Bendable delineators and 4-inch bollards can also function as excellent parking lot signage stands. How many times have you driven into a parking lot with reserved spaces indicated respective by signs, only to see most of those signs posts bent and damaged from minor bumper collisions? With Gorilla Post family of bollards and delineators as sign posts, accidental bumping of signs no longer means costly repairs and unsightly, unprofessional bent signs throughout your space.

Decorative Bollard Covers: Visually Pleasing Protection

The great thing about steel pipe parking bollards is that they can be “disguised” as almost anything, with the addition of decorative bollard sleeves or wraps ( Bollard covers come in all shapes, sizes, and colors, so, no matter what type of design motif you need your bollards to match, there are options available that will do the job.

Installing bollard sleeves is easy to do, and most can be updated or replaced over time, according to the aesthetic needs of the surrounding environment. There’s no reason to sacrifice functionality in favor of looks.

Is your parking lot active at night? We have bollard covers and Gorilla Post delineators available with built-in lighting components, adding another layer of safety and security and allowing your patrons to walk to and from their vehicles in a well-lighted environment. This not only acts as a deterrent to car thieves and other criminals but provides parking lot customers the peace of mind that comes with walking in well-lit areas at night.

night time feature for bollard

Another great night-time feature for bollard covers and delineators is reflective striping. Made from the same material as pavement markers and street signs, reflective striping on bollard sleeves and delineators reduces the likelihood of an accidental collision at night by brightly reflecting vehicle headlights, thereby making sure drivers can see the bollards well before they hit them.

Not only does this add another layer of security to your parking lot, it helps prevent collisions in general and can go a long way toward keeping your lot accident-free.

Parking Zone: For All Your Bollard Needs

With all the available options for bollards, bollard sleeves, and decorative covers, it’s not unusual for shoppers to have questions before buying. Parking Zone has been in business since 1987 and, in our three decades of experience in the parking supply industry, we’ve helped countless clients find the right solutions for their unique needs.

Our conscientious customer service team will assist with completing your order and answering any questions you may have about our products, their installation, and the many applications of parking bollards.

No matter what type of parking lot you’re shopping for, you’re guaranteed to find what you need at Parking Zone. Contact us today at 1-800-292-PARK.

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