New tech helps find parking spots


The stress of searching for elusive empty bays in busy car parks may one day be a thing of the past, thanks to new technology being tested on the streets – and in the car parks of Milton Keynes.

Drivers can spend, on average, more than a day each year looking for vacant spots, according to a new study commissioned by +Ford Europe – and the new technology, being tested this week, displays a “crowd-sourced” map of available spaces, specifically in formal car parks.

Ford Europe expert Christian Ress.
We understand how much wasted time and unnecessary stress is caused by searching for parking spaces in towns and cities. With our research into ‘collaborative parking’, we see an opportunity to hand that time back to drivers, helping them enjoy happier, healthier and more efficient journeys.

+Ford Europe are among project partners to have developed “collaborative parking” and other vehicle-to-infrastructure technologies as part of the UK Autodrive project – a £20 million government-sponsored programme taking self-driving and connected-car technologies from the test track to the streets. With parking spaces in towns and cities across Europe increasingly difficult to find, it is hoped technology like this could help. **

“Collaborative parking” is powered by data from the parking sensors of vehicles using the car park. This informs the map that shows which spaces may be free – and can also incorporate data from the car parks’ own monitoring systems.