Cities are getting more populated by the day. The high densities of these environments has led to numerious mobility issues including severe traffic congestion and unnecessary fuel consumption.
The final product is a future facing app that can help users find street parking efficiently, increase user preparedness when driving to new places as well as automating parking payments on mobile phones.
Alice Kim, Elaine Lu, Kanika Kumar, Noah Jung
How might we leverage the IoT to alleviate urban mobility issues?
Cities are getting smarter…
Cities are getting smarter and more efficient by the day. These emerging smart cities utilize electronic data collection sensors to monitor various city wide services. This opens up many new opportunities when designing new experiences. Moving forward with this project, we asked ourselves, “How might we improve and design experiences in the context of these emerging smart cities?”
Having efficient street parking is vital to the fast paced nature of the urban lifestyle. We conducted research and found many issues that arise with the current street parking experience. Several key issues with street parking include finding a parking spot at close proximity to destination, anxiety surrounding over-time parking as well as under utilized parking spaces.
These issues opened up many opportunity areas for us to design new digital experiences. Our goals for this project is to design a future facing app that can help users find street parking efficiently, increase user preparedness when driving to new places as well as automating parking payments on mobile phones.
With an idea in mind, we came up with a list of things we wanted to know. Going into the research phase, we defined assumptions (what do we know, what we know but can't know, what we know but can know). With this list, we came up with a list of question and sent them out to people around the New England area in a form of a survey. With over 30 responses we were able to get a good idea of the existing issues surrounding street parking.
Some of the key research findings are:
User Segmentation and User Needs
Looking at the research, we boiled down the user types into two categories: Free Parkers, people who prefer not to pay and do not mind walking or driving the extra mile to save money for parking. Paid Parkers, people who are fine with paying for parking as long as they find the closest possible spot to their destination. Using this information, we developed user personas and identified user needs using a journey map
Before structuring and developing the surface elements of the app, we researched different conceptual models that can help us as well as the audience better understand the concept of our app.
Branding + Surface Design
When thinking about the image of s’park, we wanted to convey a sense of reliability but at the same time we want people to see from our branding that s’park is a high-tech, future facing and exciting product.
Setting the Scope of the Product
Structuring the App
• Utilize and show all available street parking spaces
• Help users find street parking with lower prices that are closer to their destination
• Reduce number of parking fines that are issued
• Increase user preparedness when driving to & parking at new places
• Reduce anxiety surrounding over-time parking
• Reduce time people spend looking for available parking
• Automate parking payments on mobile phones
What goals are we trying to achieve?
• People spend less time looking for available parking (less stress, more preparedness)
• People become more aware of availability of parking around set locations
• People are more aware of paid parking, free parking, and time zones/limits
• People receive fewer parking fines with our app notifications and renewing payment feature
How will we define and measure product success?
• People usually get fined when their meter runs out.
• Popular parking locations: Benefit Street, College Hill, South Main Street, Downtown.
• Many people have issues with unpaid & expired meters.
• Most people think looking for parking is hard.
• People try to avid paid parking, and if they pay with card they tend to pay maximum amount.
• Reserved parking for faculty is annoying for other people to see and not be able to park.
• The most important factor when looking for street parking is lower price and proximity of parking spot to their destination
• People like the simplicity of the current parking meter with a time countdown
^ Initial Brainstorm - Identifying opportunity areas.
^ Mapping out the user journey - Identifying pain points.
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