Stratford, ON – Canada – The City of Stratford is moving forward on an innovative pilot project that will enable it to track the usage of municipal parking spaces, and eventually make that data available to the public.
The smart parking initiative, which brings the City together with partners eleven-x, FoxNet and Canada’s Open Data Exchange (ODX), involves sensors embedded in the asphalt that will send signals to a low power wireless network indicating whether vehicles are parked in the spaces.
Following approval of the project by Stratford City Council in the fall of 2017, a total of 78 parking sensors or “pucks” were installed in spaces along Wellington, Downie and Albert streets. The sensors will connect to the eleven-x long range wide area network (LoRaWAN™) to provide real-time communication of the location of available parking spaces. The eleven-x network will securely capture and transmit the data from the sensors for collection, and software provided by FoxNet will help interpret that data and display it in a graphical interface.
The information will be used by the City to better understand parking patterns in Stratford and will also be shared with the public in an Open Data platform that will help motorists determine where parking spaces are available downtown.
“This is another example of how Stratford is on the leading edge when it comes to the innovative use of new technologies,” said Mayor Dan Mathieson.
The ODX is providing funding of $50,000 toward the $100,000 project, with the remainder coming from the City’s parking reserve fund.
“The data from the smart sensors used in this project will be open to the community online, enhancing smart connectivity,” said ODX Managing Director Kevin Tuer. “We’re excited to further help smart city and IoT (Internet of Things) initiatives and are happy this has been done on a framework which creates opportunities to work with open data.”
“Parking can be a major issue in urban centres. I’m sure everyone can understand the frustration of driving around in your car looking for a spot that never seems to be available,” added FoxNet President Bill Fox. “We are really excited to work with the City of Stratford, eleven-x and ODX on this pilot parking project, that will use top of the line technology to help solve the problem.”
“We are pleased that the City of Stratford has chosen the eleven-x LoRaWAN wireless network to launch their smart parking initiative,” said Dan Mathers, President and CEO of eleven-x. “Our goal is to support the city in delivering the best parking experience while optimizing their parking processes. A key factor in this is supporting the open data component. Our low power network is scalable and can tackle a diverse set of Smart City applications making it easy for Stratford to build on their open architecture platform in the future.”
The smart parking pilot project will run until the end of 2018, and the data generated by the sensors is expected to be made available to the public online this year.