3VR increase efficiency in video evidence retrieval for Parkway

3VR increase efficiency in video evidence retrieval for Parkway

Overview

Parkway Corporation is an 85 year-old, family-owned commercial parking and real estate firm that develops, manages and leases approximately 90 parking facilities across the U.S. and Canada. The company has implemented completely automated parking processes at many of their facilities and numerous facilities are now utilizing solar-powered parking equipment.

Business challenges

Parkway had a basic security solution in place, relying essentially on cameras and VCRs that were recording activity in their facilities and storing video for 30 days. The video was used initially to count cars to ensure cars parked matched the number of tickets issued at the entry gate. Even with the video recording, employees still had to walk the facility each evening to manually record every car by color and license plate to prove which cars were left overnight and accurately charge customers who claimed to have lost their ticket. Parkway director of security and asset protection, Charles Craige, began looking for a more robust video surveillance solution that could offer easier access to video evidence for revenue control and claims detection. Craige was also interested in finding a solution that could improve the company’s ability to prevent, detect and prosecute crimes and centrally monitor activity at remote locations.

3VR solution

Craige selected 3VR VisionPoint suite of software and solutions that combine the record and store functionality of a traditional VMS with a unique ability to search and analyze specific content within the video. This forensic search capability enables investigators to find more granular data and evidence in just minutes. Craige was specifically interested in 3VR’s video analytics such as License Plate Recognition and Dwell Time. Parkway conducted a pilot program with 3VR, and the results convinced management to install 3VR in all owned and leased locations.

Results

  • Dramatically increased efficiency in video review and retrieval
  • Improved proactive customer service
  • Received two civic awards for prompt delivery of evidence to law enforcement
  • Increased customer satisfaction levels

Improving the bottom line

3VR’s License Plate Recognition (LPR) analytic created significant efficiencies for Parkway. Instead of requiring attendants to walk the garage nightly to manually record all license plates, now all plate numbers are captured by video as the car enters the garage. So if a customer loses their ticket, they can simply provide their license plate number and the customer service representative (CSR) can run a search using 3VR LPR analytics to verify how long the car was in the lot and accurately charge customers, preserving Parkway revenue. This is in use in limited garages now, with plans to expand it to all facilities.

Crime detection

The 3VR solution has also directly helped Parkway solve several crimes, as reported in the Region’s Business journal in Philadelphia in July 2013.

Around mid-June 2013, one of Parkway’s larger locations had been experiencing an uptick in theft from autos, as a result of two people exploring the garage and searching for unlocked cars. The team burglarized approximately 30 vehicles over the course of six weeks not only at Parkway locations, but throughout the city. A witness spotted a purple PT Cruiser at the time of one of the incidents and with 3VR video analytics, Parkway was able to get the license plate of the suspect’s vehicle and place an alert on it. The next time the criminals entered the garage, an email alert was sent to Craige who was able to immediately notify police and catch them in the act.

Parkway also uses the 3VR dwell time analytic to offer added security in unmanned lots. These facilities have parking kiosks where customers must enter their parking spot number to pay. Craige’s team discovered that criminals had started impersonating attendants, telling customers the kiosk was broken and taking their cash. The company was able to use the dwell analytic to alert security whenever someone was seen dwelling near the pay station. This allowed them to catch criminals on multiple occasions, protecting the company’s revenue as well as ensuring customer safety.

Parkway also uses the dwell time analytic to secure remote areas in garages that might be used for illegal activity. The 3VR solution will automatically send an alert when anyone is seen loitering in these areas.

Claim management

3VR VisionPoint VMS also includes powerful case management tools built into the solution to help build stronger cases for law enforcement by easily organizing video and documents into a centralized online case folder. Parkway uses this functionality to save claims for review and share video evidence across the company, as well as with law enforcement when appropriate.

A better customer experience

The company has also leveraged 3VR technology to improve customer service, by creating a customer care center that is available 24 hours a day. Customers can press a button in a facility to contact customer service if they are stuck at a gate, a machine is not working, or if they have a question about their account or any general concern. The Vision Point API and Dwell automatically alerts customer care if a customer is stationed at a gate for more than 90 seconds, so the customer doesn’t even have to act-- customer care will reach out proactively to ask if they need assistance. Customer care representatives can see the customer on camera and speak with them via voice-over-IP technology integrated to a single user interface with 3VR’s API.

Future plans

The company is now looking at integrating 3VR with pointof-sale systems and upgrading to higher quality cameras. Additionally Parkway and 3VR are discussing how 3VR’s VisionPoint Dashboard can leverage the existing security platform to deliver a detailed analysis of activity including people counting, dwell patterns, and heat maps, all correlated with POS data that can be used to improve the customer experience, optimize staffing levels, and analyze performance across properties and regions.
 


Product Adopted:
Transportation
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