How ‘Smart Cities’ Can Expand Urban Car Parking
Nick Austin of the Australian parking app company Divvy points to the potential for “smart city” technologies to dramatically raise the efficiency of carpark usage, thus reducing the need for the construction of large-scale parking facilities in constrained urban areas where space commands a heavy premium.
“There aren’t a whole lot more car parks being built in cities, so they’re set to become a more rare and expensive resource,” Austin told industry news and analysis website Sourceable.net. “That’s why it’s very important to improve their utilization. To waste an important, increasingly rare resource in our urban environments is just negligent.”
The website article, by Marc Howe, continued: The ubiquitous presence of mobile devices, along with the enhanced connectivity of modern urban centers, has paved the way for technologies that permit the flexible leasing of idle carparks. Drivers can learn of available spaces via smartphone apps.
“We have commuters coming into areas like the Melbourne CBD, where there are traditionally very limited options when it comes to parking,” Austin told Howe. “What this new technology essentially does is create a great deal more affordable parking by granting people access to spaces that would otherwise just sit idle.
“If I have a parking space sitting vacant, I can lease it to you via an app, and you’ve now got a place to park where you need at an affordable rate. You can search for parking with the app, you can book it and pay for it, as well as use your phone as an access device for a building.
“It’s about creating a form of ‘smart city’ technology, which actually connects someone to the city, as opposed to just information and payments for a specific service,” Austin said.”