Coding the Curbs Utrecht

Together with our partner Fronteer we are doing an opportunity scan in Utrecht for organising a Coding The Curbs living lab.

By performing an opportunity scan, we are preparing to set up a Living Lab. By setting up a living lab (test environment) with existing apps and open source data, we digitise a street in Utrecht. With this method, we learn which information is or not yet available and which is important to ‘code’ the ‘curb’.

By scouting the area, we map out which streets or neighbourhoods will benefit from curbing. Think of streets with potential dual functions, where people shop during the day and where there are cafés and restaurants in the evening. Or the situation around primary schools and sports clubs, where there are clearly peak traffic movements and then little for the rest of the day. Mapping out the various functions and users gives us a basis to work with.



What we do

In consultation with the municipality of Utrecht, we determine the scope and focus of the project. We then determine which streets are suitable for digital programming. We look at a mix of modalities, functions and traffic density. Besides choosing the location, we also determine, in consultation with the client, a number of KPIs that will determine the focus of the project. We choose one street for the opportunity scan.

The designated location is used as the first use case to map out the digitisation of the street. With our specially developed technical route scan, we map the existing physical and digital infrastructure and take stock of how the digital world and the physical world are relating to each other. It provides a picture of reality that serves as a foundation for the user perspective. We also look at the current challenges in the area.

Why we do it

The new mobility strategy of the Municipality of Utrecht focuses on the city of the future. A place where mobility is tackled more intelligently to meet the challenges and developments of the city and work towards a city that is and remains accessible, healthy and attractive. One of the three pillars within this strategy is ‘From static to dynamic’ and focuses on the question: How can we dynamically organise and utilise the available space for optimal mobility within the city? 

A promising development that can accelerate the transition to sustainable cities is the choice for smart flexible infrastructure in the layout of neighbourhoods and streets, both physically and digitally. Coding the Curbs™ is a solution that puts a digital layer over the physical infrastructure, preparing the city for the future. After the Corona-crisis, it also helps to accelerate the implementation of the ´one and a half meter society´ when it comes to our mobility system, including public space. As a result, scarce square metres are used more effectively.


How we do it

Coding the Curbs™ believes in learning by doing and a co-creative approach. By tackling this concrete issue with a partner coalition of (technology) companies and governments, we learn with each other. We do this by setting up a specific area in Utrecht as a testing ground for Coding the Curbs™. This is the place for the first practical project. This is the real-life test environment for applying the prototype and developing the entire design, application and use process in practice. Our approach is phased and starts with an Opportunity Scan, in a later phase to be scaled up to the Living Lab and pilots. This pilot also aims to provide new action perspectives on which new guidelines and policies can be based. We believe in long-term cooperation: start small, think big.



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