Prediction of parking space availability in real time

Felix Caicedo, Carola Blazquez, Pablo Miranda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

144 Citations (Scopus)


Intelligent parking reservation (IPR) systems allow customers to select a parking facility according to their preferences, rapidly park their vehicle without searching for a free stall, and pay their reservation in advance avoiding queues. Some IPR systems interact with in-vehicle navigation systems and provide users with information in real time such as capacity, parking fee, and current parking utilization. However, few of these systems provide information on the forecast utilization at specific hours - a process that requires the study of the competition between parking alternatives for the market share. This paper proposes a methodology for predicting real-time parking space availability in IPR architectures. This methodology consists of three subroutines to allocate simulated parking requests, estimate future departures, and forecast parking availability. Parking requests are allocated iteratively using an aggregated approach as a function of simulated drivers' preferences, and parking availability. This approach is based on a calibrated discrete choice model for selecting parking alternatives. A numerical comparison between a one-by-one simulation-based forecast and the proposed aggregated approach indicates that no significant discrepancies exists, validating and suggesting the use of the less time consuming proposed aggregated methodology. Results obtained from contrasting predictions with real data yielded small average error availabilities. The forecast improves as the system registers arrivals and departures. Thus, the forecast is adequate for potential distribution in real-time using different media such as Internet, navigation systems, cell phones or GIS.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7281-7290
Number of pages10
JournalExpert Systems with Applications
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jun 2012


  • Forecasting
  • Intelligent transportation systems
  • Parking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Artificial Intelligence


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