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Maximizing Curb Space Efficiency

a study on the estimated climate and economic benefits of  Smart Loading Zones in Pittsburgh

modeled and prepared by: Aaron Burns

SLZ Pittsburgh Impacts Study 2024.png

Competition for curb space is fierce. Increases in parking needs from traditional users combined with new parking space use cases e.g. restaurant extensions on sidewalks and curbspace, are creating an imbalance between supply and demand. In certain sectors, such as package delivery, the demand for parking space is driven by an increasing market share of e-commerce, up to 15% as of 4Q23. Evidence of a lack of parking supply is supported by estimates from INRIX, a leader in nation-wide traffic data collection and congestion modeling, that the total annual cost of searching for parking in the US exceeded $72 billion in 2017.

Automotus can help alleviate this parking space imbalance by better managing supply and demand with their Smart Loading Zones (SLZs). Setting aside dedicated and intelligently controlled parking locations allows cities to avoid the negative effects of free parking. Instead, SLZs can manage parking demand to decrease parking occupancy to recommended levels and in turn reduce traffic congestion impacts, among other potential benefits.

This report summarizes the estimated impact of SLZs in Pittsburgh, PA on fuel consumption, associated emissions, and the monetary value of driver delay, on a per loading zone and city basis. The estimates are derived from a model that assesses parking metrics before and after the start of SLZ operations and is built on assumptions and methods from recent research. Based on current data from Pittsburgh, the model estimates annual savings of 3,500 gallons of fuel, 30 metric tons of CO2 emissions, and over $9 million dollars in driving time value per SLZ.

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