Global Trends -The future is Digital

Aerial view of automated Parking Lot

Parking Technologies- the future is here

Neo Batakathi

Imagine getting into your car, telling Siri or Alexa to take you downtown, and boom! You are driven straight to Copper Cabbana!

The digital promise shifted from the horizons as the world welcomed the communication of technological devices online.

Known as ‘the internet of things,’ this technology brought about smoother operations for most businesses during the Covid 19 pandemic.

Could Covid19 have taught organisations an inimitable way of conducting business or it simply nudges the world towards a fuller embrace of modern industrial technology?

In an interview with Prof. Norbert Gronau, from the University of Potsdam, Germany, shared with the leading tech developers, (DESIGNA), how almost every industry is set to be affected by the ‘now or never impact’ of technology.

“Almost everything which represented stable ground for business models in the past will change.

“Ownership of goods will give way to the model of instant and temporary use of a product.

 “Hierarchical structures will be supplemented by semi-autonomous systems,” said Gronau.

Business interventions that resulted from the Covid19 pandemic may have been a signal to many companies that no industry could be immune to global trends.

Prior to Covid19, Parking Companies in Africa had maintained a seemingly moderate level of innovation opting for community-based approaches to business.

Between ailing economies and sensitive urban priorities lies an unwholesome reliance on a readily available workforce

African countries annually top World Bank unemployment rate lists, prompting industry leaders to interrogate their role as either drivers or victims of the digital revolution.

Parking innovations in the developed world have for long mirrored the need for evolution and adaptation of the developing world. Nonetheless, the pandemic has brought these issues to a boil.

Parking assistance, automated parking lots, and the Internet of Things (IoT) are expected to shape the future of parking.

Automated parking lots

The vertical parking lot is proof that more effective parking technologies are on their way, observed blogger Phil Callum.

“With vertical parking systems, parking lots will become much smaller, or there will be less need for more parking lots as the available ones will be enough for the vehicles.

“The whole process of parking cars using machinery comes as an efficient introduction to the improvement of competence in car parking,” he observed.

 The vertical system functions in the same manner as an automatic storage bracket, allowing up to four times the number of vehicles that a standard parking lot can hold.

The need to leave space between cars is eliminated as the motor vehicle driver exits the car before it is parked, leaving it on a movable platform that elevates it before transferring it to a parking slot.

Multifunctional and easy to use, DESIGNA's manual pay station system offers touchscreen functionality.
Multifunctional and easy to use, DESIGNA's manual pay station system offers touchscreen functionality.

The Internet of Things

 The parking industry will not afford to distance itself from the benefits of the Internet of Things (IoT)

When a parking lot uses IoT in its system, drivers can see the parking space in real-time through an app service or a website. This way, a driver will know if there is an available space to park the vehicle before getting to the parking site.

Studies conducted by Operations Commander, a cloud-based parking systems developer, have shown that the IoT-based parking system, reduced the average time drivers spend finding parking space by 43%.

Robotics and self-driving vehicles

Unbelievable as it may sound, with each passing year; inbuilt computer systems have improved the car’s ability to assist the driver. The t-t-t reversing sound is already a famous driver’s assistant!

With the advancement of technologies like the parking sensor, there is a keen expectation for self-driving and robotic cars.

The embrace of technological innovation within the motoring industry removes the question of whether that day will come or not. Improved trends in the car industry are speculated to improve parking.

Adaptation to trends

With these trends speeding up more than ever, it is only a matter of time before more technological solutions arrive in the parking industry.

Along with the game-changing Park Assist App that motorists are steadily warming up to City Parking is advancing a camera-assisted parking management system that makes use of multiple sensors to quantify traffic within CBDs and assist motorists in finding free bays in real-time.

City Parking (Pvt Ltd) has mastered concepts such as reviving old parking lots; increasing technological collaborations; improved customer care; data analytics and cost management to come up with an ever-improving system.

If Zimbabwean cities are to reflect anything close to world-class, then, town planners, as principal actors, will need to marry global trends, citizens’ needs, and economic realities, to provide effective parking solutions.

For cities, adapting to the new reality of things and utilizing parking management companies such as City Parking in providing parking solutions is the way forward.

 The future has begun in the parking industry, and we must all embrace it.

Avatar for Phil MacCallum

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