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Monitoring the Flow of Pedestrians

Monitoring the flow of pedestrians in the city (applicable to flows in cultural activities, and tourist or commercial flows)

The management of flows, both at a level of mobility and at a level of pedestrians, is a challenge shared by all the major cities, and Barcelona isn’t an exception.

Knowing in real time the distribution of the people in the open spaces of the city allows its management to be improved and become more efficient, thus making cities more agile, safer, and more pleasant to live or work in, or to visit.

The solution of this challenge aims to be applicable to different cases, and very specially two.

The first, the management of cultural activities that are held in open spaces in the city.  The Institute of Culture of the City Council of Barcelona, the mission of which, amongst others, consists of spreading culture in the districts and neighbourhoods of Barcelona, boosting the activities of non-profit cultural sectors,  promoting the cultural and leisure activities carried out in the city, organise popular events in the public space that require real time monitoring systems of capacity, flows of pedestrians, and hot spots in open spaces so as to improve the operation and design of the events in the street.

The second, the management of tourists and visitors in the city, as well as the commercial flows.  Barcelona is a city full of social and cultural vitality, open to the world and all the cultures and is classified as one of the favourite cities for tourists, with more than 25 million people visiting the city in 2012.  Efficiently managing the flows of tourists should allow an improvement in the experience of the visitors to the city as well as strengthening the competitiveness of the local tourist industry and the commerce of proximity, facilitating the management of the security and mobility in the city, amongst others.

Therefore, in all the cases the challenges consist of being able to know in real time, with the most precise as possible measurement and analysis systems and techniques:

  • Flows of pedestrians and the size of the movement
  • Capacity and the number of people attending an event
  • “hot” spots
  • And others

Having this information in real time should allow the city of Barcelona to carry out a more efficient planning and management of events in the city and the tourist and commercial flows.

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