A revolutionary parking system with real time information has been tested and implemented in Treviso. It has produced significant benefits to the city, with impacts on traffic conditions, air quality, city’s quality of life, and also to parking revenues and the users themselves.
Background & Objectives
Through this innovative system, the city of Treviso aimed at improving the whole parking system in the city. The system is based on wireless sensors installed in every paying parking bay in the city and it returns data (per bay) on parking availability, time-rotation, and revenue protection.
A series of wireless sensors have been installed underneath the road surface in parking bays. When a Car occupies a car park space, the FL200 sensors communicate information on the presence of vehicles to parking meters, the users then have to remember their parking bay number and type it in the parking meter before payment. The Trevisosta “i -park“ scheme allows payments with coins, by SMS, by smart phones, with rechargeable cards or time cards. The parking meters send the data collected from sensors and the payment data to a central server, which then processes them. Data is then made available on a website for consultation in the relevant offices and then on to a PDA with internet connection carried by the parking supervisors. The communication between all the system components and the operation centre, uses proprietary wireless protocols and GPRS, and the parking sensors require no external power supply.>These systems can be installed very quickly and without any roadwork for wiring.
A year after since the system was first implemented, results proved to be very satisfying. Enforcement activities have become more effective. When a violation occurs (such as nonpayment, parking time expired, exceeding the maximum time allowed for parking) these conditions are notified to handheld terminals supplied to parking controllers to allow them to pass on the respective fines instantly. This procedure has increased the efficiency of the whole system, with an increase of 10% in total revenues.
The availability of parking bays has also increased significantly and parking lots are no longer occupied by illegal users (non-paying). Indeed, an underground parking structure for 250 cars, which was originally planned to meet estimated parking needs of the city, has proved to be no longer indispensable.
Finally, users have declared an appreciation of the new system thanks to the improved payment conditions. They do not have to return to vehicle if they wanted to add extra time, as they can simply pay with SMS or time cards at any parking meter. To this purpose an additional one has also been installed in the central pedestrian area, in order to let users extend their parking time before it expires, while continuing to shop or simply enjoy the city.