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Tuesday, 18.06.2024
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eleven-x tapped for wireless, real-time monitoring of 5,000 parking spaces in Arlington VA.

Arlington County in Virginia has selected the Waterloo-based startup eleven-x for one of the biggest deployments of smart-parking technology in North America.

Eleven-x will embed 5,000 sensors in the pavement of on-street parking spaces in Arlington’s commercial district. The sensors will communicate with the eleven-x software platform, eXactpark, that provides real-time information on whether a spot is vacant or not.

The eleven-x platform will be integrated with Arlington’s parking meters so rates can easily be changed — charging more for parking spots in high demand.

“We launched in the U.S. a year ago, and now 80 per cent of our revenues are from the American market,” said Dan Mathers, the co-founder, president and CEO of eleven-x.

With 5,000 sensors that will be buried in the pavement under the parking spaces, the project in Arlington is by far the largest for eleven-x. The second biggest was also in the U.S. — the University of Wisconsin in Madison that used 1,300 sensors. Last year it also completed a project in downtown Oakville using 1,200 sensors.

“We have a deep pipeline in the U.S.,” said Mathers. “We are responding to many RFPs right now.”

From its office in the David Johnston Research and Technology Park, eleven-x is going after a huge market — there are 800 million non-residential parking spaces in North America in airports, malls, sports venues and downtowns. In North American cities there are 350 million municipally owned and operated parking spaces.

“So the market is just staggeringly huge,” said Mathers.

Parking has long presented expensive challenges to cities and private-sector owners. It is estimated that 30 per cent of road traffic is caused by drivers looking for parking. Globally, vehicles looking for a parking space are responsible for 430,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions every day. And one in five collisions happens on or near a parking lot.

“Traffic and parking touch almost everyone, so our technology can help improve the quality of life in many cities,” said Mathers.

Founded in 2015 by former BlackBerry engineers, eleven-x spent years exploring market opportunities for its sensors and wireless technology.

It was the first in Canada to build low-power, wide-area networks in every major city across Canada. In the years after it was founded eleven-x technology was used to monitor trash levels in municipal collection bins, water levels in underground aquifers and parking spaces, among other applications.

Eleven-x completed 50 paid pilot projects with 30 customers to market-test its technology in different areas.

But the engineers, who worked in BlackBerry’s famed wireless development group, soon realized their tech was ideally suited for managing parking spaces and parking garages. Drivers consult the app to see exactly where empty parking spaces are. Parking managers quickly learn where and when demand peaks, and can direct drivers to available spots.

It reduces traffic congestion, cuts greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles and avoids the costly construction of new parking spaces. In Canada, the University of British Columbia, Calgary, Stratford, Guelph and Oakville use eleven-x technology.

“It has been quite journey,” said Mathers. “We are pretty excited for the future.”

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Autor(en)/Author(s): Terry Pender

Quelle/Source: The Record, 16.02.2023

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