Stuttgart Airport Will Have Fully Automated and Driverless Parking
Bosch, Mercedes-Benz, and the parking garage operator Apcoa want to introduce driverless and fully automated parking at Stuttgart airport in the future. To this end, the automated valet parking (AVP) system co-developed by Bosch and Mercedes-Benz is to be made ready for commercial operation.
The new Mercedes-Benz S-Class is already geared up to accommodate it as the world’s first production vehicle to feature the technology required for future infrastructure-based AVP. As an option, customers can buy the appropriate pre-installation for what the company calls the INTELLIGENT PARK PILOT, which makes the S-Class capable of receiving a smartphone command to drive itself to a reserved parking space.
The P6 parking garage at Stuttgart airport will serve as the pilot for the planned commercial automated parking service. Here, the companies will test how the vehicle technology onboard the S-Class interacts with the intelligent Bosch infrastructure and APCOA FLOW, the digital platform provided by the parking garage operator Apcoa. This platform makes the whole parking process ticketless and cashless.
In the airport parking garage, preparations are currently underway to begin piloting the planned automated valet parking service. The aim of this trial with new S-Class vehicles at Stuttgart airport is to ensure that interactions between the vehicle, infrastructure technology, and parking garage operator run smoothly and are optimized for the customer.
The pilot parking garage at Stuttgart airport will be a premiere for new Bosch video cameras that can identify vacant parking spaces, monitor the driving aisle and its surroundings, and detect obstacles or people in the aisle. A dedicated control center in the parking garage then calculates the route the vehicles need to take to reach an available space. Thanks to the information that the cameras provide, it is also possible for cars to drive themselves around the parking garage.
In the future, Bosch’s aim is to equip more and more parking garages with AVP infrastructure technology. As Europe’s largest parking garage operator, Apcoa also has a strategic interest in offering innovative premium services like AVP in more of its parking garages.
The company manages approximately 1.5 million individual parking spaces at over 9,500 locations in 13 European countries. By increasing the availability of driverless and fully automated parking services, the same amount of space could accommodate up to 20 percent more vehicles. In addition, driverless parking is especially suitable for narrow, remote, and therefore unattractive parking areas that people would otherwise avoid.