The increasing pace of cities brings challenges to government, business and commuters. Transport operators find it difficult to remain competitive and facilitate new payment experiences by increasing their fleets and the modes of payment available on routes and introducing value-added services. Governments face an even more complex challenge with the need to balance commuter adoption with the attractiveness of services for businesses.
The transition to smart city status can take years. In the meantime, traffic volumes and congestion continue to grow, rising demand for an efficient and quick to deploy solution that does not negatively impact on existing infrastructure. Worldwide car sales are expected to reach 62 million this year despite the effects of coronavirus on the global economy and 110 million by 2025.
This exponential increase in vehicle production and sales - coupled with the increase in urbanisation - means governments and cities have to adapt before it’s too late.
Why smart parking technology is important?
The answer to traffic load and how it can be countered could be simple. Smart parking spaces have addressed problems like availability of service, congestion and urban mobility in many cities. The evolution of parking facilities provide benefits to drivers, transport operators and governments; bringing order, transparency and automation to the roads. Sooner or later, smart parking systems will become a necessity for all major cities who are looking to achieve the smart city standards.
Read more about the top smart city trends for 2021.
Benefits of Smart Parking
1.Save time and decrease cruising time
If you can relate to the experience of being slowed down by a driver looking for a parking spot or one that does not have enough cash or a card to pay at the gate, you will welcome smart parking. Smart parking systems are connected to centralised cloud servers that notify commuters of available space via mobile app, making cruising around for somewhere to park a thing of the past.
Automation not only guides commuters but also simplifies the payment experience. The app acts as parking guidance that is automatically embedded into a customer’s mobile GPS tracker, identifying the parking slot and the applicable rate while collecting fares digitally, saving time and money for a large number of parking operators. A win-win situation that helps drivers and parking operators alike.
2. Efficient parking management
Smart parking is not only about creating additional spaces for commuters. It is also about extensive data collection and management; access to real-time data insights and analytics to be able to improve parking facilities; making traffic and tariff management more efficient, and making the process easy and transparent for end-users.
With the consent of drivers for data collection, smart parking helps predict future road load and automate tariffs for parking spaces. It also creates a hyper-personalised experience, taking into account social benefits and government subsidies which can be automatically offered to travellers who fall into specific categories, such as seniors or students. All this contributes to making a city more accessible and friendly.
3. Improve fare collection
Queuing to pay for parking or searching for a ticket machine are experiences that make parking unpleasant. For time-sensitive consumers, improving the parking experience is essential in order to retain existing customers and win newer ones. Decreasing the number of steps to buy greatly increases the chance of a customer making a purchase and the same applies to parking, where the easier the mechanism of payment is, the lower the risk of losing the payment.
Starting from the digitisation of payment through a tap of a bank card and mobile phone, it can continue with smart fares applied based on number plate scans or vehicle dimensions entering the parking zone.
Parking service operators should collaborate with municipalities, transport operators and other agents of the ecosystem to start creating a truly smart city environment. Some cities have already introduced smart parking to bring these benefits to their citizens.