This paper addresses geometry design and operating mode optimum design of a new kind of 2-DOF parallel manipulator actuated horizontally by linear actuators. The forward and inverse kinematics of this manipulator are derived. The four groups of inverse solution correspond to four different operating modes which cannot transit to each other smoothly. The workspace and the singularity trajectory of each mode are discussed. Based on the desired workspace, the geometry of the mechanism is determined. The operating mode of the mechanism is optimized according to distributing of all global and local performance indices on the workspace. The results are very useful for the design and application of the new manipulator with multiple forward and inverse solutions.