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At HeatSync Labs in Mesa, AZ, I noticed an innovative approach for dealing with the stuff that members leave unattended in a makerspace. If members leave a project out on a table, they can be cited with a parking ticket by one of the board members.

If members want to avoid a ticket, they can get a parking pass that details how long they expect to leave stuff out in the space.

Each member of HeatSync Labs has access to a storage box to use to put things away. But as anyone who’s ever had a roommate knows, some people are just not good at picking up after themselves. A makerspace can begin to look pretty cluttered if everyone leaves projects out in a shared workspace.

Dale Dougherty

I’m founder of MAKE magazine and creator of Maker Faire. I am CEO of Maker Media, the company that produces MAKE, Maker Faire and Maker Shed. I am Chairman of the Maker Education Initiative (



  1. Laura Cochrane says:

    Ha! That’s a pretty good idea. We should have project parking tickets & permits in Make Labs!

  2. Skyler says:

    TC Maker has been using the parking ticket system for a while. You can find more information as well as copyleft copies of our tickets you can use on our wiki:

    1. DanBackslide says:

      Credit where credit is due: We got the original idea from I3 Detroit, and adapted it for our own nefarious purposes.

  3. Luis says:

    Yep TC Makerspace created it and open-sourced it. We use it in KC at CCCKC!

    1. Riley says:

      TC Maker’s space, the Hack Factory, did indeed lift the idea from I3 Detroit. It was one of the many brilliant things we found there.

  4. Agreed we got it from them! Thanks!
    Also any member can cite another member.

    –Jacob from HeatSync

  5. I’ve got to adapt this for around the house – laundry, dishes, toys, the dog…….

  6. [...] the piece Watch Where You Park Your Stuff at HeatSync Labs, ballondoggle [...]