LYON, France – Following a successful one-year trial involving 500 parking spaces at the Lyon Airport, Stanley Robotics and VINCI Airports announced this week they agreed to expand the program to more than 2,000 spaces by summer 2020.
The innovative outdoor car park is “entirely managed by robots,” in which seven autonomous robots work simultaneously to deliver cars to the parking lot from 28 cabins that are available for customers to drop off or pick up their vehicles. The companies said that the project, initially started in 2017, ultimately aims to offer more than 6,000 parking spaces.
The “robot valet service” frees up time for passengers looking for free spaces or trying to locate their vehicle in a traditional parking lot or garage. After booking a space through the Lyon Airport website, passengers can drop off their vehicle in one of the dedicated cabins, and travel to the airport using a shuttle bus. The robot then takes care of the car, parking it within the secure car park area. When a passenger returns, they can pick up their vehicle in one of the cabins.
“This agreement represents a major development stage for our benchmark project on the Lyon Airport site, and for our service,” said Clement Boussard, CEO of Stanley Robotics. “The opening of 2,000 spaces illustrates how far we have come in terms of maturity, with a product that is increasingly professional. It represents a significant leap forward in the history of our young company, and boosts are confidence in our plan to conquer the airport market and get other projects up and running right now.”
The project aligns with the airport company’s sustainable development approach, the company said. “The robot valet service provided by Stanley Robotics and developed in Lyon meets the strategic objectives of Lyon Airport, namely, to enhance customer experience and reduce the environmental impact of the airport’s activities,” said Tanguy Bertolus, CEO of Lyon Airport. The companies said the project:
- Reduces land use by making it possible to create 50% more spaces within the same surface area, since vehicles can be packed in very closely, and several layers deep. This helps preserve the surrounding soil structure.
- Limits C02 emissions by eliminating the need for passengers to drive around the car park, looking for a free space. Robots in the system are powered by electric motors that don’t emit C02. The companies estimate that 100 tons of C02 emissions can be avoided for 2,000 parking spaces over a one-year period.
The companies released the following statistics regarding usage of the 500 spaces during the trial period:
- 8,000 users utilized the service – with currently about 750 uers per month.
- 95% of customers said they would use the service again.
- The robots have traveled 2,000 km since opening.
The Lyon Airport served 11.7 million passengers in 2019, offering 130 direct destinations and 52 new routes in the last three years. It is managed by VINCI Airports, the leading private airport operator in the world, managing 46 airports in France, Portugal, the U.K., Sweden, the U.S., and other countries. Stanley Robotics is a venture-backed company that offers a smart and high-density car storage solution for airports and other car logistics industries. The full-stack solution comprises of fully autonomous robots and intelligent storage management software.