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Brisbane parking management: An integrated, strategic approach

Brisbane parking management

This project will support the development of a fully integrated and strategic plan to improve the parking experience in Brisbane City.

The research will:

  • Evaluate customer uptake on the digital parking experience
  • Benchmark the city against other capital cities in parking performance
  • Provide a comprehensive review of smart parking solutions
  • Develop scenario analysis models to predict parking behaviour; and
  • Integrate digital strategies, algorithms, and data to support the pricing and enforcement of parking.


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Project background

The research extends over a three-year period and will develop a strategic digital plan to improve the parking experience in the city. This includes evaluation of customer uptake on a digital parking experience; benchmarking the city against other capital cities; a comprehensive review of smart parking solutions; development of scenario analysis models to predict parking behaviour; and integration of digital strategies, algorithms, and data to support pricing and enforcement.

The project consists of three interrelated themes, sequenced as follows.

1. Understanding the uptake of the smart parking and digital parking experience

Council’s successful implementation of ePermits, removal of coin payment and increasing adoption of CellOPark app by customers, as well as digital infringement enhancements are all part of the digital transformation of parking experience in Brisbane.

However, there are still significant gaps in digital parking management which inhibit seamless and efficient utilisation of parking space, especially by those who need the parking more (such as elderly and mobility impaired people). To rigorously plan and facilitate the Council’s transition toward a total parking management solution, it is planned to evaluate customer uptake of current digital solutions and evaluate successful practices from around the world.

A staged guideline to assist successful implementation of new systems can increase the likelihood of success and wide adoption of these systems in the future. Benchmarking and analysis of the uptake of digital versus analogue parking options will support the future parking technology roadmap.

There is a need for a mid-term review of what has been done against the objectives determined based on the taskforce recommendations. This will assist in confirming a strategy to continue the digital transformation given customers’ expectation and recent developments.

2. Parking pricing and time limit evaluation

Parking management is progressing away from traditional zone-based approaches toward dynamic, performance-based frameworks. Having a real-time, accurate picture of on-street and off-street parking utilisation provides an effective means for revealing drivers’ parking behaviour in response to existing policies, especially price and time limits.

This can be achieved by integrating parking data from different systems, imputing missing elements and inaccuracies, and developing a model of utilisation based on this data that expands on current modelling around occupancy.

The next step is to expand the resulting model into a comprehensive what-if scenario evaluation framework, similar to the digital twin concept. Any potential changes to parking prices and/or time limits can be simulated through this framework to obtain rigorous insights about their potential implications on drivers’ parking behaviour.

The framework, therefore, can assist policy makers and planners in Council to evaluate and model the full extent of behavioural changes in response to proposed policy updates before implementing them, allowing timely and accurate advice to achieve the expected outcomes.

With a dashboard and real-time reporting capabilities, this framework can integrate all parking utilisation data into one place and provide accurate insights about parking behaviour to a wide range of stakeholders at Council. This provides further opportunities for innovation and collaborative projects across work groups which can in turn, enhance customer satisfaction.

3. Enhanced License Plate Recognition for Parking Detection

Parking compliance and the way on-street parking is used by different users play an important role in effective management of kerb space as well as road traffic.

The Council is moving towards the Azure insights platform to manage and process data to a range of dashboards and tools via Power BI. The parking occupancy forecasting Power BI dashboards have demonstrated the potential for parking business units to present, analyse and report on information across the portfolio platforms, as the current dashboard connects data from several parking meter systems and generate insights and forecasts.

More accurate data on actual parking behaviour collected through simple technologies (mobile cameras) and processed through a series of state-of-the-art algorithms can be fed into a similar Power BI dashboard which also integrates other parking-related data, such as payments and enforcement activity, into one location to provide unprecedented insights on parking behaviour.

The results can be used to inform public education of parking and traffic regulations, offences, and fines while driving future parking policies. Moreover, compliance plans can be generated to inform potential areas of problems, special needs, and irregular behaviour.

There is a need to better predict and validate real-time parking activity using a range of tools including mobile phones, wide-view cameras, parking and other data, and smart analytics. Compliance plans would assist several areas across Council to plan activities for changes to parking operations and management.

Project objectives

The project objectives delivered through each of the three sequenced themes are:

1. Understanding the uptake of the smart parking and digital parking experience

A comprehensive guide will be developed for seamless transitioning from analogue to digital experience for smart solutions, and practical recommendations will be provided for enhancing customer experience in Brisbane based on the current uptake of digital technologies.

2. Parking pricing and time limit evaluation

The objective is to develop a framework which enables evaluating the impact of parking pricing and time limits on drivers’ parking utilisation, including the following:

  • An advanced model based on historic data from on and off street -parking in Brisbane to explain drivers’ responses to different parking prices (changed annually) and different parking time limits (varied across zones).
  • The model is validated and calibrated to simulate different pricing and time limit scenarios and to predict the effects of the scenarios on drivers’ parking utilisation.
  • Insights are generated about overall parking utilisation efficiency and revenue under different scenarios.
  • Parking data from Council’s Kerbside Asset Information System (KAIS) will be utilised to assist real-time analysis.
  • Payment and utilisation transactions from off-street parking management systems will be integrated for the off-street parking facilities (King George Square and Wickham Terrace) to accommodate both on-street and off-street parking behaviour.
  • Reports of current utilisation can be seen in real-time, and simulation results can be compared with the current situation instantaneously.

3. Enhanced license plate recognition for parking detection

The objective is to develop a solution which enables monitoring and assessing parking behaviour in real-time using mobile cameras and parking data from other sources:

  • An algorithm will be developed to distinguish vehicles parked on the kerb.
  • Data from Mobile Enforcement vehicles.
  • Payment transactions from parking meters and parking payment providers will be integrated with actual kerbside occupancy extracted by the above algorithms.

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