Optimising price and location of parking in cities under a sustainability constraint

Transport demand management can help cities to make their mobility more sustainable. One of the most effective ways for doing this is with parking management. However, no tools are available to the Belgian cities that can help them optimise the number of places, price and time slots of public parking, under the constraints of sustainability.

In the SUSTAPARK project, we built such a simulation tool. It is constructed as an agent-based microsimulator, in which drivers are modelled as a synthetic population. Their trips related to working, shopping, going out, et cetera are simulated, as well as their search for a parking space. The search behaviour is based on research that takes economic, cognitive, and situational factors into account when people look for a parking space.

The model has been applied to the city of Leuven, for which three case studies were conducted:

  • adding a new large parking garage to the city centre, leading to a shift in the use of parking spaces,
  • a higher parking demand due to the Christmas market, leading to increasing parking search times and distances,
  • making part of a street in the city centre car-free, leading to no significant impact on parking behaviour.


Final report (in Dutch)

All data (the Java source code of the model, as well as the city's GIS shape files used from G@lileo) are available by sending an e-mail request to Sven Maerivoet (total size is some 530 MB). Disclaimer: the document and containing data are subject to limitations and liability based on copyright law. The digital document or prints of it have the status "working copy"; and no rights can be borrowed from its content.

presentations & publications

  • June 2-5, 2009, Karel Dieussaert, Koen Aerts, Th�r�se Steenberghen, Sven Maerivoet, and Karel Spitaels, 'SUSTAPARK: An Agent-based Model for Simulating Parking Search', in Proceedings of the 12th AGILE International Conference on Geographic Information Science, Leibnitz Universit�t, Hannover, Germany (paper, pdf)
  • September 22-25, 2009, Karel Spitaels & Sven Maerivoet, SUSTAPARK: Duurzaam Parkeerbeleid', in proceedings of the XXIth Belgisch Wegencongres, Ghent (paper, in Dutch, pdf)
  • July 9, 2008, Sven Maerivoet, Applications of Traffic Modelling, presentation for ITS Belgium's TechWatch seminar (presentation, pdf)
  • June 30, 2008, Karel Spitaels and Sven Maerivoet, An empirical agent-based model of parking behaviour, in proceedings of the Kumho-Nectar conference, Tinbergen Institute, Amsterdam, The Netherlands (paper & presentation, pdf)
  • May 8, 2008, Sven Maerivoet, Parkeerperikelen, interview for Peeters & Pichal, Radio 1, Brussels
  • March 10, 2008, Sven Maerivoet, Duurzaam parkeren met SUSTAPARK, interview for Radio Scorpio (106 FM), Leuven
  • December, 2007, Sven Maerivoet, 'Hulp bij uitstippelen duurzaam parkeerbeleid', in the 'Verkeersspecialist', nr. 143, pages 11-13 (article, in Dutch, pdf)
  • October 24, 2007, Sven Maerivoet, ITS Belgium Congress, Brussels (presentation, in Dutch, pdf)


2007 - 2009

funded by

Belgian Science Policy (BELSPO)


Sven Maerivoet, Karel Spitaels, Olga Ivanova, Griet De Ceuster


KU Leuven (SADL) and Université Libre de Bruxelles (CRU)


Sven Maerivoet

+32 16 31.77.33
reference: 06.08