Austrian Federal Railways ÖBB and the Province of Lower Austria have begun a cooperation that aims to make modal shift easier for car drivers using railway services.
The idea is to create an app for smart phones that displays the availability of parking spaces at train stations and so helps the user to connect with the train services that will take them to their chosen destination. The app will work with real-time data and will include information on the availability of parking spaces, as well as forecasting likely changes to this availability before the arrival of the individual user. This forecasting will be based on empirical values.
The app will be launched in the autumn of 2019, although preparations are already ongoing. Four parking locations at train stations in Lower Austria will have 700 parking spaces fitted with sensors to allow information to be collected on their occupancy rates. In the summer, the app will be fed with data from the sensors to establish the empirical dataset that will be the basis of the new service. The cooperation partners plan to scale-up the project after the test period at the 4 locations to more train station parking facilities in Austria.
Currently, Austria’s railway stations provide about 116,000 parking spaces with 67,000 of these being free-of-charge for vehicles whose users connect to public transport. Austrian Federal Railways ÖBB will increase the parking facilities at its train stations by investing €140 million in the coming years.
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Article published first at www.orf.at on 6th of May 2019