15 October 2021
Sutton Council will trial technology to address the increased use of Beddington Park’s Church Road entrance.
As part of the South London Partnership’s InnOvaTe Project, the Council will be working with Bayline, an Ethos initiative, to install sensors to provide a better insight into the number of vehicles using the main car parks and at what times.
Beddington Park has seen a significant increase in use during the COVID-19 pandemic, as many residents relied on the borough’s green spaces for daily exercise, to get fresh air or to improve their mental wellbeing.
Sutton’s open spaces are one of the many reasons people choose to live, work and raise a family in the borough and Beddington Park is recognised as one of the best in the country after winning a prestigious Green Flag.
The main car park has a single road in and out, which can often become congested and gridlocked with drivers not able to exit as new cars enter the park. This has impacted the surrounding residents, with police being involved due to cases of illegal parking and complaints from the local community.
Should the trial go well, the Council will then assess whether this information can be displayed on a live board, informing visitors arriving at the park that the car parks are full or encouraging use of alternative parking locations to help prevent any gridlock occurring (such as the Beddington East, Beddington West and Beddington South car parks).
The sensors will be piloted for one year and will be in three locations by the Church Road entrance:
- Car park behind the cottages
- Car park by the Cricket Club (only opened when the club has activities)
- Car park by The Pavillion Cafe
Overview of Beddington Park, with the car park access route shown in red
Councillor Manuel Abellan, Chair of the Environment & Sustainable Transport Committee at Sutton Council, said:
“Beddington Park is very popular amongst our local residents with a range of facilities on offer including wide open spaces, a playground and a cafe serving fresh food and drinks.
“However, we are aware that some residents have struggled to park, causing unnecessary traffic and problems for the local community.
“Piloting this technology will help assist the Council by accurately reporting back on the car park usage, helping to ensure that safe and reliable access can be maintained.
“Our residents can then use the car parks safely as we tackle the overcrowding of parking areas and prevent the access road from becoming jammed.”
Edward Lambert, Project Lead at Ethos VO Ltd, said:
“This is a bold attempt to crack a complex problem involving driver behaviour in which Sutton Council are understandably seeking to address residents’ concerns about overcrowding in Beddington Park.
“As well as understanding current parking occupancy and assisting planning for future parking availability, we expect to build a parameter set that optimises real time parking utilisation whilst avoiding the current congestion that the park experiences on a regular basis.
“With a comprehensive sensor network, our solution is also expected to identify parking outside permitted parking areas and further minimise disruption for residents and road users.
“We are delighted to bring our technology to Sutton and develop an IoT based solution that we expect to be able to help local authorities nationwide.”
Data collected from the sensors will be anonymous and in compliance with all GDPR policies and the project team’s Transparency Principles.
About the InnOvaTe Project:
South London Partnership is working with London Councils to deliver an exciting and innovative “Internet of Things” (IoT) project across the five south London Councils of Croydon, Kingston upon Thames, Merton, Richmond upon Thames and Sutton.
This initiative is funded by the Strategic Investment Pot (SIP) as part of the London Councils Business Rates Retention scheme which is administered by the City of London Corporation, and hopes to improve people’s lives through the delivery of a multi-purpose Internet of Things (IoT) platform, which will connect various sensors across borough boundaries.
The project is led by Sutton Council, which was selected to oversee the project on behalf of the other boroughs.
Bayline, an Ethos initiative, is a real-time parking management platform for local authorities.
The Bayline technology incorporates Highways England-approved surface mounted low-profile sensors and can detect occupancy within 7 seconds of vehicle movement. The data which communicates over LPWAN to a central base station can be immediately transmitted to the base station for upload via 4G to Bayline’s secure servers. Using the live data from the car park sensors, bayline can show Sutton Council real time occupancy for the car parks both on site and on a dashboard and parking management system.
Bayline is designed to enable parking managers to optimise the use of parking assets and provide insights into opportunities to make parking a vital part of better placemaking.
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