Some cities experience massive overcrowding during peak periods as a result of their attactiveness to tourists or for being a haven for holidaymakers.
The access to beaches, shopping and leisure areas gets blocked by cars trying to reach their destination or motorists driving around looking for a free parking spot. It creates stress and unease amongst the residents and tourists who therefore spend too much time getting around the city. The local trade notice their sales and foot traffic decrease. CO2 emissions and noise contamination caused by vehicle traffic harms residents’ health. It’s really irritating and annoying for residents and shop-owners and creates a bad image for visitors.
One of the biggest challenges of today's Public Administration and Urban Service Management is to reduce the congestion caused by looking for parking on public roads improving the traffic flow in the city and, therefore, the environmental quality and well-being of residents. Ibiza and l’Escala are two good examples of places which were facing massive seasonal overcrowding and decided to take control of the situation to become more efficient and livable places.
Ibiza: Over 2 Million tourists during summer months.
Ibiza is an island with 133,000 inhabitants that receives more than 2 million tourists a year, mostly in the summer months. This seasonal influx complicated access to the city centre and caused congestion from vehicles looking for parking. This affected the well-being of the population and even had a negative impact on trade and the image of the area.
The local Administration decided to place sensors on the parking spaces of the Marina Sector and install an information panel so drivers can be informed of the availability of spaces, avoiding unnecessary vehicle access in cases where it was full. The solution introduced optimized parking management and enabled quicker access to the city centre. Residents are now satisfied because they no longer waste time looking for parking, they suffer less stress and have an improved quality of life. They have returned once again to the city centre to shop, boosting local trade.
L’Escala multiplies population in summer season
L’Escala is a town situated in a privileged spot on the Costa Brava, Spain. It is a major attraction for tourists and holidaymakers, making it heavily affected during seasonal peaks.
The local government saw the population multiply in the summer season resulting in problematic traffic congestion in the town centre, mainly caused by vehicles looking for parking. This would generate stress and affect residents' general feeling of contentment, businesses in the centre and have a negative impact on the image of the town.
Local Administration needed to urgently reduce traffic congestion in the area caused by vehicles looking for parking and chose implementing parking sensors on parking spots and counting sensors at some entrances and exits of the crucial car parks in the centre of l’Escala. The sensor data is transformed into useful information which guides drivers directly to the free spaces by means of the seven information panels strategically placed at the roadways entering the city. Thanks to the information communicated on the panels, the vehicles are guided according to the actual availability of parking spaces, reducing unnecessary traffic flow caused by looking for parking by up to 30%.
Urbiotica’s urban guidance solution
The company’s urban parking guidance solution tackles the problems faced by Public Administrations and Urban Service Management of trying to find a parking space on public roads. It helps them reduce traffic congestion, guiding users based on real-time information about the availability of parking spaces on public roads.
Urbiotica is a Barcelona-based company specialised in the design and development of latest generation sensing systems which provide real-time information on what is happening in areas of mobility, waste management and environmental monitoring. It currently has projects installed in more than 30 cities.