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I remember watching the Fast and Furious: Tokyo Drift back in 2006, and it was the first time that I was introduced to the concept of interactive car garages; you know, where cars are placed and stored into a large warehouse via automated mechanical parts. In the years following I’d see only a few short clips on Youtube that were thrown into ads or documentaries regarding future technology, but it’d never crossed my mind that I’d actually have the opportunity to check one out in person.
It was early November 2015 and I was having the time of my life exploring South Korea on a much-needed weeklong vacation. I had spent 3 days in Seoul and was now on my 2nd day in Busan, South Korea’s second largest city. I had explored numerous attractions throughout the day such as Haeundae Beach, Haedong Yunggung Temple, Songjeong Beach, Shinsegae Department Store, and Samgwangsa Temple, and I was just about to make my way to Busan Tower when I had a sudden inkling to stop by the colossal Lotte Department store not too far from the subway station.
After snapping a few photos of the outside I noticed that there was a tall thing and white building adjacent to the plaza. After moving in closer I stumbled upon one of the coolest and yet unexpected attractions that Busan had to offer: a futuristic, interactive car parking garage, just like the one I had seen in the movie.
This garage didn’t rotate vehicles at the door like in Tokyo Drift; instead, I watched valet parkers drive their customer’s car into the garage, get out, shut the doors, hit a button, and a lift would slowly rise to a designated parking space some 10 stories above the ground and gently slide the car into the slot. This process would repeat with several other cars in the span of half an hour.
I was so astonished by this remarkable feat that I ended up staying to watch the process recur over and over again for about an hour. How wonderful it is to travel around the world and run into such cool tech!
If you’re into awesome technology like this, make sure to head over to the Lotte Department Store in Busan, South Korea!
Directions to the Interactive Car Garage in Busan: Hop on a subway to Seomyeon Station. Head to the Lotte Department Store.