Tag Archives: curb management

Developing a Curb Management Strategy: Three Factors of Formulation

Developing a Curb Management Strategy: Three Factors of Formulation


By Andrew Lamothe and Jason Sutton, CAPP

As cities navigate complex parking environments, adapt new policies, and integrate innovations, curb management continues its trend toward mainstream adoption. Most if not all parking and transportation experts across the U.S. agree that an effective curb management strategy is a priority, especially as many cities contend with double digit population growth. Naturally, this growth breeds competition at the curb.

Here are three factors to help formulate a strategy:

  1.  Set strategic goals – Strategic goals should correlate with identified challenges. What are the goals if solving for:
    • Congestion
    • Inventory Management
    • Efficiency
    • Equity
    • All the above

After goals and outcomes are defined, move to outline Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). KPI’s will serve as project milestones.

  1.  Identify Challenges
    • Legacy code and policies. These are potential hurdles to innovation. Removing or revising these hurdles creates a clear path to problem solving solutions.
    • Innovate don’t imitate. Curb management strategies don’t adhere to the adage “imitation is the sincerest form of flattery”. Every city, university, etc. is going to have its own unique obstacles, so innovate accordingly.
    • Tunnel vision. An effective strategy considers all aspects of the ecosystem (garages, lots, EV, loading zones, timed parking, bike share, etc.) and implements accordingly.
    • Funding. Does an adequate budget exist? The federal SMART grant was created for these solutions. Depending on scope, grant money may fully fund the project or augment resources.
    • Participation. Strategies succeed with stakeholder participation. Collaboration on infrastructure reviews, project scope, and a detailed execution plan is paramount.
  1. Solutions

Technologies serving the curb management space are all striving to solve the aforementioned problems. However, a “one size fits all” solution doesn’t exist, so alignment on goals and provider abilities is a must. The spectrum ranges from tech that specializes in loading zone enforcement to comprehensive curb management platforms. Considerations should be made for accuracy and integration capabilities, while identifying the solutions that meet the unique and specific needs of the operation.


Andrew Lamothe is Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Cleverciti. He can be reached at andrew.lamothe@cleverciti.com.

Jason Sutton, CAPP, is Vice President of Channel Partnerships for Passport. He can be reached at Jason.Sutton@passportinc.com.

From Static Storage to an Engaged Curb for People and Goods

By Benito Pérez, CAPP; Lawrence Marcus; Alejandra Argudin, CAPP; and Michael Sawyer

Parking management demands have evolved in the past two decades while municipal practice is catching up. There are several components for organizations to consider, including  technology and   workforce development to the evolution from being  a storage manager to manager of  a dynamic curb serving the movement of people and goods.

Parking management has been a static practice for a better part of six-plus decades with the introduction of the parking meter in 1935, the proliferation of automobiles, and little innovation for a long time after. Municipal parking management led to a standard practice of managing vehicle storage. When parking pressures overwhelmed a community, they built more and more parking.

Fast forward to the early 2000s, when cities had been hollowed out by large roadways and oceans of parking. Municipal leaders in several cities realized things needed to change (can’t build your way out of a parking problem) when it came to transportation and parking management to liven up their economic fortunes and community vitality. Adding to the pressure of revitalizing municipal economic fortunes, there has been an evolution of shared mobility, commercial docking, and pending connected automated vehicle (CAV) and zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) demands competing with traditional parking at the curb.

Some municipalities have taken innovative measures to redefine their curbside management practices within the past decade. Such efforts have been aimed toward improving the urban fabric, sustainability and resiliency, and maximizing the value of the curb to serve the movement of people and goods. However, those efforts did not happen in a vacuum or overnight.

Reflecting on work from Washington, D.C., Richmond, Baltimore, and Miami, what does it take to manage shifting mobility practices? Key to the discussion is understanding and valuing the components of the streetscape that are essential to a vibrant curbside and mapping a path forward towards building and evolving a successful municipal curbside management program.

Benito Pérez, CAPP, is a transportation advocate formerly with the District Department of Transportation. Lawrence Marcus is with Forward Progress. Alejandra Argudin, CAPP, is with the Miami Parking Authority. Michael Sawyer is with the City of Richmond, Va. They will present on this topic at the 2021 IPMI Parking & Mobility Conference & Expo, Nov. 29 – Dec. 2, in Tampa, Fla.

Modernizing Curbside Management

How’s your curbside management game? Parking and mobility professionals might have known about curb management before COVID-19 but most other people didn’t–but they learned fast how critical it is to manage that valuable chunk of real estate.

In this month’s Parking & Mobility magazine, take a look at the potential of curbside management, the potential role of technology, and how things will change from here, including what your organization needs to know to adapt even more. It’s an eye-opening feature and one you’ll want to share with others to keep everyone on the cutting edge. Find it here.

Learning from 2020: Why Cities Need Better Curbside Data

Accelerating growth in the use of curb space has resulted in the demands on curb space to exceed supply. Today, transportation network companies such as Uber and Lyft complete more than 4 billion annual trips globally–the bulk of which begin and end on urban curbsides. E-commerce continues to grow, with goods delivery companies making millions of stops on city curbsides daily. Looking ahead to the not-too-distant future, the widespread adoption of connected and automated vehicles (CAVs) has the potential to reduce the need for parking, but could also dramatically increase the demand for short term pick-up and drop-off spaces on the curb.

The number of new uses for curb space only continued to grow over the past year as the COVID-19 pandemic changed how we collectively considered the curbside. From pedestrian-only streets, to curbside patios, and an expansion of curbside pickup and dedicated delivery zones, the evolution of curbside demands in just the past year has shown that cities need to be agile in managing how curb space is allocated to meet the needs of residents and local businesses.

What did we learn from all this? That we need great data to manage the curb. Learn what that means for parking and mobility organizations and how to get from here to there in the August issue of Parking & Mobility magazine. It’s a great feature to share with staff and start–or continue–strategizing about your curbside management plans.

Ensuring Curb Equity

Illustration of city street showing many different vehicles using the curb.When we speak about curb equity, we are not speaking about proportional access to the curb. If access were proportional, national delivery fleets would dominate all loading zones and cars would dominate all other on-street inventory. When we speak about curb equity, we are referring to equitable access to the curb within an ecosystem that is aware and considers the various people, business, and vehicles that utilize the curb. Curb space is limited and the competition for this space increases almost daily. Parking administrators and policy makers work with their staffs to craft policy that addresses this added volume but must also consider the downstream effects of these policies. What do we do to accommodate the increase in delivery vehicles? How do we best manage TNC drop-offs and pick-ups? When viewing things through this prism of curb equity, we must also answer questions like how curbside regulations affect the people using the curb? Are we treating all of my citizenship equitably? Did this new initiative disproportionally affect the business community?

To fully define curb equity, we must consider all parties with interests in the curb. In this month’s Parking & Mobility magazine, Keith Hutchings, City of Detroit; and Christopher Perry, CAPP, ParkTrans Solutions, LLC, explore curb equity: What it means, different groups to consider, why it’s important, and how to incorporate it into a curb management strategy. It’s a great resource–get your copy here.

Curb Management in the Real World

By Robert Ferrin and Brandy Stanley, CAPP

Everyone hears a lot about curb management, congestion mitigation and data gathering, but sometimes finding solutions in action can be difficult. Join us for a free, online, IPMI Shoptalk June 2 to learn more about the real-life solutions two cities are testing to manage the curb.

In late 2019, the City of Columbus worked with partner curbFlow on a six-month pilot to reimagine how loading zones could be established, evaluated, and monitored by testing innovative strategies. The program is all part of a broader culture of innovation and testing born out of Columbus’ Smart City Challenge award and work program implementation.

The City of Las Vegas has launched a program aimed at helping TNCs operate in the downtown area.  The program consists of both on-street and off-street components:

  • A loading and unloading zone managed by 8-foot digital displays, including countdown timers by individual space and enforcement notifications.
  • An off-street staging area where TNC drivers can use a restroom, get access to Wi-Fi, and rest while waiting for their next ride.

Launching these two programs required a lot of collaboration with many different stakeholders, including elected officials, business and property owners, TNC regulatory agencies, Uber and Lyft, taxi companies, TNC drivers themselves, etc.  It also meant creating new and expanding existing partnerships with private companies to develop the hardware, software and support needed to put the solutions in action.

Join us online June 2 to learn more about these pilots, lessons learned, and how these two cities are moving from pilots to scalable solutions for curbside and loading zone management programs. Click here to register, and bring your questions.

Robert Ferrin is assistant director, parking services with the City of Columbus, Ohio.

Brandy Stanley, CAPP, is parking services manager with the City of Las Vegas, Nev.

Wired: Pandemic Prompts Cities to Rethink the Parking Spot

Yellow sign on curb reading Curbside Service Pick Up HereIt’s no news to industry members that the COVID-19 pandemic brought about a change of thinking around parking–after all, parking and mobility professionals are the ones who largely thought through and enacted curb management strategies to help businesses and communities. But as the larger world takes notice, the mainstream media is asking: What does this mean for the future?

Wired takes a look at how fewer cars and alternate uses for spaces traditionally used for parking have caused people outside the industry to wonder if things could be different going forward. “In many cities, business proprietors have pushed back against parking changes, afraid that potential customers won’t stop to shop if they can’t park. But the pandemic has changed the way many make money—and shifted their opinions on how the curb is used,” it says. It goes on to look at how things shifted in several cities when pandemic lockdowns began, and how parking and curb management might change permanently as a result.

Read it here and let us know in the comments: What do you think?

Valuing the Curbside in a New Normal

COVID-19 parking transportation curbCurb management planning and strategy was already well underway in Washington, D.C., when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, but the virus still managed to change almost everything. On-demand delivery services–DoorDash, Grubhub, etc.–took over crowded curbsides in what felt like overnight and demand for temporary parking space outside businesses skyrocketed from city residents taking the opportunity to pick up their own groceries, meals, or other necessities without violating stay-home orders.

For the District Department of Transportation (DDOT), once the initial situation had been managed, focus shifted to our eventual recovery from the pandemic. And now that the recovery is beginning, focus is squarely on how lessons from COVID-19 will shape the short- and long-term future of the curb in the city.

David Carson Lipscomb, curbside management planner with DDOT, shares the city’s experiences and lessons in this month’s Parking & Mobility magazine–and they’re largely transferable to other operations. Click here to read his story and see how Washington, D.C.’s COVID-19 lessons may shape the way we all think about the curb going forward.


Curb Appeal: Data to Understand and Manage These Valuable Assets

Tire turned into the curb - parking on a hillBy Meera Raja

The space between streets and sidewalks has become the hottest new real estate. The competition for curbside space is fierce; from delivery to drop-off and all the modes and activity in between, everyone wants a piece of the curb.

Traditional street parking and freight space are battling an influx of new mobility modes, resulting in curbside disruption. Now more than ever, cities need to responsively manage these spaces to balance the competing objectives of communities, business needs, and local transportation priorities. The right intervention can rationalize and optimize this valuable asset to prevent congestion and achieve equity and environmental goals, all with a potential for new revenue opportunities for cities.

Cities have multiple paths to manage curbs, but a key piece has continued to be missing from this discussion: understanding real-time demand at the curb.

Before building out proposed interventions, we need to understand activity at the curb: what specific curb space is currently designed to do and the actual demand for each space. Understanding this mismatch by modeling curbside activities can enable new tools for curb management; data and solutions on time- and location-specific demands will inform how to best allocate and monetize the space.

This exercise can also inform a dynamic management business model that accounts for proportional use and value. With a demand-driven model as a foundation, cities can actively test and implement tools that dynamically manage curb spaces, relieve curbside pressures, and create efficiencies for users. As activity and demand continue to shift due to either intentional interventions or mobility modes and trends that arise, refreshing data and models will be key to creating dynamic tools that allow for flexibility.

With this type of approach of first modeling activity and value and then piloting an intervention, cities can build robust data-driven plans to deploy flexible management, dynamic pricing, and forward-looking urban design solutions.​

Meera Raja is senior manager of solution design & program development at City Tech Collaborative. She will present on this topic during IPMI’s 2021 Mobility & Innovation Summit online, February 24-25–click here for details and to register.

Managing Commercial Vehicle Loading: Technology and Regulatory Opportunities

Generic white delivery truckBy Dawn Miller

I’ve developed an odd new habit the past year. When walking, biking, or riding shotgun in the car, I take photos of delivery vehicles double-parking. At times I capture drivers trying to maneuver around the double-parked vehicles, sometimes ever-so-carefully nosing into oncoming traffic. I also take photos of delivery vehicles blocking crosswalks and ADA ramps. If I’m fast enough, my photo captures the pedestrians who’ve been forced into traffic to move around these vehicles.

I also notice the delivery trucks that have managed to find a pretty good place to pull over.  Sometimes it’s in designated loading space. Sometimes it’s not, but the location is reasonably safe and not interfering with anyone else’s safe travels. I want to give these drivers a socially distanced high five, but they would probably think I was nuts.

Although there’s a natural tendency to ascribe a person’s choices to their individual character or values, my belief is that there isn’t a major difference in moral character between drivers loading legally as compared to those loading illegally. I don’t believe the crosswalk blockers care less about pedestrian safety than other drivers do. What they are doing is reacting to their environment: the pressures placed on them by their employers, and the availability and discoverability of safe and legal loading options.

The good news is that as public servants and parking industry professionals, we have tools to improve this environment. We can use pricing, smart regulation, and technology to create the best set of options we can for commercial drivers, making their jobs easier while improving mobility for everyone else. As more and more people have begun to understand  the impact of deliveries on our streets, it is an ideal time for us to implement best practices and new technologies.

Dawn Miller is vice president for policy and partnerships at Coord. She will present on this topic at IPMI’s Mobility and Innovation Summit, online, Feb. 24-25.  For details and to register, click here.