City of Columbus shows success of real-time curb-management pilot

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The City of Columbus, Ohio, and CurbFlow, a mobility solutions company, have released highlights from a six-month smart curb management partnership, with satisfaction among delivery drivers very high, and illegal parking cut by over 50% among users.

The city converted eight high-traffic areas into CurbFlow-managed Loading Management Zones (LMZs), where commercial and on-demand drivers checked in via the CurbFlow Driver App. During the pilot, completed in May, CurbFlow coordinated commercial and on-demand operator pickup and drop-off activity to available curb space in real time. The LMZs provided operators with new, reliable curb access and were chosen based on operator-provided pickup/drop-off data.

Over the course of the pilot approximately 2,400 commercial and on-demand delivery drivers registered on CurbFlow’s Columbus app, who then used LMZs around 19,000 times over the six-month period – more than 105 times daily – for pickups and drop-offs, with an average dwell time of about 5 minutes.

Driver satisfaction was overwhelmingly high and resulted in faster pickup/drop-offs and reduced double and illegal parking – 65% stated they would have illegally or double parked over 50% of the time if the LMZ didn’t exist.

Moving forward, CurbFlow recommends an overarching, citywide Digital Loading Zone (DLZ) programme that digitizes all aspects of loading zones and commercial permitting.

“The City of Columbus thanks CurbFlow for its participation in this pilot program, and for being a great partner in the process,” said Robert Ferrin, assistant director of parking services. “We will begin to explore options for implementing a successful loading zone programme that provides better access to the curb for businesses, on-demand services and mobility providers.”

“We are excited about the results of this pilot and look forward to exploring broader solutions with the City of Columbus to improve safety and productivity while reducing congestion and harmful emissions. The embrace from the commercial and delivery driver community along with various stakeholders in Columbus provides us a template on how to continue working to serve them and future cities,” says Ali Vahabzadeh, founder and CEO at CurbFlow.

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Tom has edited Traffic Technology International magazine and the Traffic Technology Today website since May 2014. During his time at the title he has interviewed some of the top transportation chiefs in charge of public agencies around the world as well as chairmen and CEOs of multinational transportation technology corporations. Tom's early career saw him working on some the UK's leading consumer magazine titles. He has a law degree from the London School of Economics (LSE).

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