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Airport parking security

Using video analytics to streamline airport parking security

parking garage

Managing airport parking requires a delicate balance. Revenue is always a factor, but security has to come first. Add in customers who demand a smooth experience, and parking gets complex. Video surveillance with a data driven approach can help – from minimizing threats to streamlining payment.

Security breaches at airport parking areas

airport parking security

With thousands of cameras across terminals, gates, and parking garages, even the best of security teams can get overwhelmed by the steady stream of video feeds. It is no surprise that after 20 minutes, almost 90% of important footage goes unnoticed. So much information makes it difficult to focus on what is essential. Unfortunately, this can lead to security breaches, especially in parking areas. In 2019 for instance, a series of stolen vehicles were reported near Midway International Airport in Chicago. The thieves were never found.

Collection of Metadata: Evaluation in real-time and over longer periods

Intelligent cameras are a practical tool for preventing such incidents. By managing the flood of information and providing actionable insight, video analytics allow security managers to evaluate their airport parking area in real time. Security cameras with integrated video analytics attach a layer of metadata to video feeds. This data also simplifies decision making for new security measures. Over longer periods of time, managers can measure and analyze various aspects of airport parking to identify vulnerabilities. By knowing where loiterers gather near unattended vehicles, for instance, security teams can implement safety precautions like improved lighting and an increase in security guards in the area.

security breaches at airport parking areas

"Collected camera meta data reveals where parking currently is not safe"

Maarten Wings, Global Vertical Manager Airports

Improved experience for security teams

airport parking facilities

Video analytics go beyond security to improve the overall parking experience – for both customers and security teams. Analytics help operators monitor health and safety regulations, such as no parking zones, blocked emergency exits, or people entering/exiting through an emergency exit. At curbside drop-off and pickup, machine learning algorithms can detect and alert law enforcement when vehicles remain parked beyond the maximum time limit. Or operators can receive notifications to check the situation on the ground.

Improved parking experience for passengers

Improved workflows for security teams make an impact on how customers experience the parking process itself. With an optimized traffic flow passengers can find a free parking spot quicker. Thanks to notification systems, passengers find spots more easily by using a mobile app or following displays which direct them to open spaces. The system even accounts for the distance to the closest exit, so passengers can leave the parking area – and come back to find their car – as quickly as possible.

car theft

40% of potential parking revenue is lost through inefficiencies

Increased revenue with video analytics

Parking is one of the biggest revenue drivers at airports. In 2018, LAX earned $96.7 million from parking alone. But that did not happen on accident. It was the result of focused planning and continuous improvements over a longer period of time. It is estimated that 40% of potential parking revenue is lost through inefficiencies between security requirements, internal operations, and the customer experience.

Intelligent cameras start by tracking ingress and egress and relaying this data to parking management systems. By knowing the number of open spaces and specialized spots (e.g., for handicap or electric vehicles), operators gain insight that converts to real-time dashboards or long-term initiatives. The smoother the experience, the more likely it is to have repeat customers. To simplify payment for parking, cameras can recognize license plates and automate billing, so there is no more need to stop at the barrier for a ticket. The same license plate recognition then helps passengers find their car when they return.

airport parking lot

How video analytics streamline airport parking:

  1. Intelligent cameras increase security by detecting breaches, loiterers, and perimeter incidents and collect data of these incidents, which help to improve operations.
  2. Customers and security teams benefit from an improved experience. Parking is quicker, easier, and healthier for everyone involved.
  3. Video analytics drive revenue. Cameras detect congestion, occupancy rates, and processing times – the perfect foundation for optimizing the business side of parking.

Maarten Wings

Maarten Wings

Global Vertical Manager Airports

“Tomorrow’s ‘smart’ control rooms will be able to automate security and safety processes and also leverage data-driven insights. What our industry needs to make it happen is a mind shift from considering a security camera as an image source, to seeing it as a data sensor.”

Bosch has over 300 airports in its customer base. Through global coordination of best practice sharing and many personal airport visits, I am able to provide sustainable and effective working solutions to help airports meet their goals. As an active member of Airports Council International (ACI), I represent Bosch as a technology partner for airports. Interested? Connect with me through email or LinkedIn.


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