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How to manage parking lots with Low Emission Zones

There are already many cities that have Low Emission Zones. Barcelona was the first city in Spain to implement them and has served as an example for other cities such as Madrid or Seville. These delimited areas are zones where the circulation of the most polluting vehicles is restricted in order to reduce air pollution in the urban area.

If we do a count in Europe, we have about 280 cities that have implemented Low Emission Zones. Among them we find for example London with two different LEZ zones, one of them being much more restrictive. Another example, in Brussels, the restrictions are active 24 hours a day, every day of the week.


Following the approval of the European Climate Law, new regulations will be established that will affect several cities. One of them is the obligation to create Low Emission Zones in cities with more than 50,000 inhabitants. This law, in addition to the objective of climate neutrality and that the European Union should achieve negative emissions from 2050 onwards, establishes a binding target for the reduction of net greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% by 2030 compared to 1990 levels.

Within less than two years, Spanish cities with more than 50,000 inhabitants will be required to designate new low-emission zones in order to greatly reduce the use of private vehicles in their urban areas. Another measure also included in this new regulation is that all cities with more than 20,000 inhabitants that do not meet minimum air quality requirements will also have to have mandatory delimited zones.

These mobility restrictions will be implemented to improve air quality and citizens’ health as well as to mitigate climate change. It is also intended to promote more sustainable mobility and recover public space for pedestrians

According to the latest data from the National Statistics Institute (INE), the Spanish towns and cities required to establish these Low Emission Zones total 149.

This obligation can be a problem for citizens since not all of them have public transport at hand and need their vehicle to move and access it.

For this purpose, there are Park & Ride lots. These are parking lots located on the outskirts of cities so that citizens can park here and go to the city center by public transport. Generally, these parking lots are located near bus or train stations to facilitate transfers and promote the use of public transport.

How to improve management and achieve a more efficient use of these areas?

With Urbiotica’s guidance solution for Park & Ride facilities, you only need to equip the entrances and exits of the parking lot with wireless sensors.

The information collected by the system determines the number of free parking spaces in the area, as well as the availability of spaces reserved for special vehicles (such as PRM or electric vehicles).

This information is made available to drivers indicating free parking options through variable signage panels and/or APPs.

How does the system work?

  1. The driver goes to a parking area and accesses it through a well-defined entrance. Then the U-Flow sensor installed at the entrance detects the passage of the vehicle and sends the information to the platform through the communication network.
  2. The platform collects the data and, based on the total capacity of the parking lot, recalculates the free spaces with this new access. It then sends the data with the updated information to the panels or APPs indicating one less free space.
  3. When the vehicle leaves the area and passes through the exit, the process is carried out in reverse. The platform sends the information indicating that there is one more space available.
  4. As long as there are spaces reserved for special vehicles, these can be monitored with U-Spot sensors on a space-by-space basis.
  5. From the U-Admin platform, the manager can supervise, configure and consult all system information both in real time and statistically.

This simple system makes it easier for citizens to park their vehicles on the outskirts of the city. Since they have real-time information on the status of parking spaces, parking is streamlined. It avoids the circulation of vehicles in search of free spaces and improves mobility in these areas.

In addition, it reduces traffic and pollution since unnecessary turns are avoided. In this way, citizens enjoy a more efficient and pleasant city. Urban traffic is greatly reduced and users park more easily, reducing their stress and increasing their satisfaction in the process.


Another links of interest: 

U-Flow counting sensor

U-Spot single space detection sensor

Park & Ride guidance solution

Information about LEZ 


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