Smart Technologies at the Beach - Coogee Beach

Independent

Randwick City Council

Coogee Beachfront and surrounding streets, Coogee , New South Wales

Project stage

In progress

Timeframe

Start date: 01 July 2019
End date: 30 June 2020

Project value

Australian Government funding:
$300,000
Total:
$800,000

Partners

  • Coogee Surf Life Saving Club
  • Coogee Precinct Association
  • Peclet
  • Meshed
  • ECS Security and Investigations
  • Hitech Support
  • John Coluston Electrical

Focus area

  • Visitor experience
  • Facility and services management (buildings, energy, waste, utilities)
  • Public safety (crime and disaster prevention and management)
  • Natural environmental data and measurement (air quality, dust, noise, waterways)

Project type

  • Visitor experience
  • Public safety
  • Smart parking
  • Smart waste
  • Smart amenity management
  • Environmental monitoring

Technology type

  • Internet of Things
  • Wi-Fi
  • CCTV
  • Network infrastructure
  • Data Management (Data platform, open data, data privacy and security, blockchains, standards)
  • Smartphone applications
  • Hardware
  • Wireless sensor networks
  • Smart poles
  • IT systems (interoperability)
  • Cloud computing

Project link

Project summary

To apply smart technologies to optimise the visitor experience at the beach, including digital aquatic safety boards, improved water and landside safety, traffic and parking management, amenities servicing and mashing up of Council and other open data to present a unified view to the beachgoer

The challenge

Coogee Beach is one of Sydney's most popular beaches and is loved by locals and visitors alike. The beach has significant visitation and as a result the experience is less than optimal. Traffic congestion, waste management and servicing of facilities is a challenege, as well as making sure people are safe in the water and safe when visiting the large number of licensed venues in the area.

Solution

A multifaceted approach to test a number of technologies in the harsh coastal environment and to optimise the experience. Signage will guide visitors about key aquatic safety measures, backed up by CCTV operational surveillance of the water from three different angles, enhancing lifeguard response. Parking will be optimised through a sensor and signage network, and payments will be able to be topped up from the sand using a smartphone app.  Sensors will monitor environmental conditions, combined with other publicly available data to present a holistic view of beach conditions. Amenity and bin utilisation will be reported to the City Services Directorate staff in real time. Enhanced CCTV coverage of the town centre as part of Council's capital works upgrades will provide improved safety, with direct connection to the NSW Police Force. Wi-fi coverage supports visitation and economic development.

Benefits

By viewing Coogee as a testbed for technology, utilising Council's existing investment in backhaul fibre and smartpoles, we can validate the technology solutions before rolling out to other beaches. The investment in the aquatic safety cameras is already being scaled out across Clovelly, Maroubra, Little Bay and Malabar beaches; and the weather station network will also scale out to Maroubra beach. The community benefits through more efficient service delivery by Council reducing costs; economic development through higher visitation and footfall into local businesses; improved sense of safety both on the water and on land and maintaining Coogee's place as a premier beach in Sydney.

Lessons learned

  • Procurement is difficult for pilot projects when the key emphasis is risk minimisation - for new technology such as LoRaWAN a degree of failure must be accepted.
  • Performing civil works whilst not disrupting the beachgoers is a major challenge.

Outcomes

  • Aquatic safety outcomes have been enhanced with Council staff having access to CCTV across all Council beaches, which have provided improved training outcomes and faster responses.
  • Deployment of public Wi-Fi has been positively received by the Precinct association with utilisation peaking at 200 users on a warm weekend day.

Contact details

Name: Anthony Collis
Phone: 0290936560
Email: Anthony.collis@randwick.nsw.gov.au