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07 February 2019

Cotares adds Parking Tours to its public developer site

First publishedon www.ITSInternational.com

Cotares, which specialises in software for navigation and mapping, has added a tool to encourage the development of smart parking solutions to its public developer site.

The firm says Parking Tours is designed for the developers of route finding and guidance systems to change their offering from ‘A-to-B’ into ‘A-to-park-near-B’ where on-street parking is available.

The company suggests that route guidance can be augmented by an optimised parking search (a ‘Tour’) that adapts to driver preferences, parking probabilities, and the rate at which parking spaces are becoming free.

“The system will guide you to park on-street more quickly and conveniently than the current systems,” Cotares director Alan Jones explains. “Without being explicitly programmed to do so, they mimic the clever strategies that real drivers use, but can use all the information about roads and spaces that parking data companies are beginning to provide.”

Jones says the ‘third generation’ solution is not constrained by routing algorithms but can instead use any legal sequence of roads. It is designed to find the sequence which, on average, will minimise the cost to the driver in terms of inconvenience, search time, walking distance or parking fees – based on the probabilities of finding a free space.

The system is improved by the addition of parking probabilities, regulations and fees from specialist providers such as Inrix, TomTom and Here, he acknowledges: “In real use, the Tours would be stitched on to the end of routes already planned by a navigation system, and would form a seamless part of the guidance.”

The developer site allows the quality of the Tours to be tested on a global map, as well as understanding the effects of varying the parameters of the algorithms. “There is no registration required, but feedback is encouraged,” Jones adds.

The site is available at http://developer.cotares.com

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