smart city September 2018

Smart parking analysis can boost the high street

Cutting-edge data analysis tools are helping smart cities to predict vehicle flows into car parks on certain days, offering a significant boost in the fight to save the struggling high street with smart parking.

According to a report published last year by the British Parking Association, drivers across Britain waste an average of nearly four days every year looking for a parking space – and the resulting impact on work productivity and especially high street shops can be enormous.

Moreover, an estimated 30% of traffic in urban areas is caused by cars looking to park – increasing harmful pollution emissions, clogging up main arterial routes that keep a city moving and leaving people with less time to shop, work or relax.

However, GeoSpock found that by crunching large volumes of occupancy data in 11 car parks around Cambridge from the end of September 2017 through to mid-April 2018, it was able to identify when and why each car park was likely to reach capacity.

It is only through GeoSpock’s unique platform that such volumes of data can be processed so seamlessly through extrapol8 software, with the final results brought to life by the unique illumin8 visualization tool.

For example, a clear observation to take from the graph below is the split between clusters for normal working days of Monday to Friday and non-working days, whether they are weekends or public holidays. It is illustrated clearly that the significant difference in occupancy levels depends on the day.

Anomalies in the results – such as spikes in car park occupancy on specific dates – could also be identified and explained by unusual weather conditions or special events.

City officials that are armed with this easy-to-consume information can therefore prepare effectively for the future, including ways to improve traffic flow.

With a better understanding of the multiple factors that contribute towards car park occupancy and the likely trends on certain dates, the experiences of people who come in to a city can be optimized, enhancing the reputation of a destination for visitors and business.

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