Vivacity Labs and Cross River partnership will improve road safety and reduce emissions in London borough


Vivacity Labs has announced that it has teamed up with Cross River Partnership (CRP), a non-profit and impartial partnership organization, to improve school street safety in the London Borough of Hackney, as part of the Healthy Streets Everyday program.

CRP’s Healthy Streets Everyday program is a Mayor of London Air Quality-funded project to empower boroughs, businesses and communities across London to deliver pedestrian-priority healthy streets, increase walking rates, and reduce emissions and exposure to toxic air.

A Vivacity sensor was installed outside Saint Scholastica’s Roman Catholic Primary School in Hackney, to collect anonymous data on different types of road users. This helps local authorities to better understand movement patterns. CRP’s Vivacity program, which took place between  November 4 and December 31, 2020, provided evidence that the School Streets scheme, which involves a section of road closed to vehicular traffic, was being used as planned. Hackney’s School Streets program expansion means that School Streets now cover more than 80% of Hackney’s primary schools and help more than 15,000 children walk and cycle to school.

By running baseline surveys, then monitoring and evaluating the scheme post implementation over the same time periods, Vivacity Labs is able to ensure consistency and objective assessment on whether a School Street zone has achieved its aims or if any changes need to be made. Accurate sensor data can answer multiple questions including whether congestion and speed has been reduced and whether a particular scheme has encouraged more cycling and walking.

Vivacity’s sensors use artificial intelligence and machine learning to capture anonymous traffic counts across a selected ‘count line’. These counts can show the interactions between pedestrians, cyclists and cars, for example. The data is completely anonymized, and each frame of video is deleted immediately after processing.

“The pandemic has changed the way we travel and it’s never been more important for authorities to have accurate data that enables them to analyze new trends,” says Mark Nicholson, CEO and co-founder at Vivacity Labs. “We’re extremely proud to be supporting the implementation of initiatives that encourage active travel, lower pollution levels and help create healthier streets. We are particularly pleased to be supporting the London Borough of Hackney as it looks to improve its street health, and we look forward to seeing the continued positive impact on the local community following our work with Cross River Partnership.”

“Our partnership with Vivacity Labs has gone a long way in making streets safer, smarter and more sustainable,” adds Fiona Coull, project manager, Cross River Partnership. “Cross River Partnership looks forward to continuing working with boroughs, businesses and authorities across London through the Healthy Streets Everyday program to prioritize healthy streets for all.”

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Lauren is a regular contributor to Traffic Technology International (TTi) and a freelance technical journalist. Over the past 15 years, she has worked on a wide variety of B2B publications and websites, including a stint as deputy editor of Traffic Technology International from 2014-2016. She has a degree in English from the University of Exeter. Lauren is mum to two busy little girls. She is always in demand!