Using existing CCTV cameras and cutting-edge analytics systems, Bullens Lane has become a site for testing how technology and data could enable a better city waste system.
This will allow the city to tackle the issue of waste dumping more efficiently and keep laneways – the busy and narrow city streets and pedestrian areas – even more clean, safe and free of garbage.
In partnership with Nokia, this pilot enables data collection and real-time insights about the use of waste compacters and recycling bins in Bullens Lane. The objective is to explore how a system might better support users, those who service the site, and ensure the space remains a safe and healthy city space.
Due to the success of this pilot, we will expand to include a total of five laneways in 2022.
What we are trying to understand
The pilot allows data to provide an insight to questions such as:.
- How much waste the Bullens Lane bins receive daily
- The peak usage times
- Alignment between waste collections and waste disposal.
The implementation of this pilot will identify opportunities for improved efficiencies and a potential for further engagement with users around awareness and behaviour.
We’re implementing this pilot in four new City of Melbourne laneways: Kirks Lane, Lacey Place, Caledonian Lane and Balcombe Place.
The data we collect will contribute to a more agile and intelligent waste system to support city businesses and waste service providers. It will also help promote correct use of the facility.
More on the technology
- CCTV cameras – with number plates, faces and any other identifying visuals blurred before being sent to be processed
- Nokia Scene Analytics Edge compute gateways
- Video Analytics Platform
- Power BI and Python Dashboards
- SMS notifications.
- Number of compactor and recycling bin users (How often people dispose of rubbish correctly?)
- Amount of time the compactor is unable to be used (How often the rubbish compactor is not working due to incorrect disposal?)
- Number of dumped rubbish events (How often rubbish is dumped in the laneway?)
- Number of times the laneway is blocked by vehicles, excluding waste rubbish trucks (How often the laneway is blocked?)
This data is collected to:
- support the people who service the bins. This helps us to understand waste patterns and make collections more efficient
- support the people who use the bins. This helps us and our providers to identify if the facility appropriately matches their waste needs
- understand and measure rubbish dumping events. This gives us the opportunity to identify causes for any dumping of waste and make changes so that people can dispose of waste correctly.
- Video stream is sent from the cameras in Bullen’s Lane to Nokia Scene Analytics Edge Gateway in a secure server room in Sydney
- The video stream is processed by blurring faces and number plates for privacy and changed into numerical information that appears on dashboards in real-time for easy viewing
- SMS alerts are also sent to City of Melbourne’s waste service contractors when rubbish dumping occurs, the compactor should be emptied, or there’s a laneway obstruction. This helps keep the laneway clean and a healthy space
- The information is also analysed for historical trend analysis to understand patterns of behaviour. This will assist the City of Melbourne in identifying and understanding opportunities for efficiency and create a safer and cleaner laneway experience in the future.
The City of Melbourne and Citywide as contracted service provider.
This data is stored permanently for any possible future analysis.
Timeline item 1 - complete
Pilot development with NOKIA and Citywide
January to July 2021
Timeline item 2 - complete
Pilot launch in Bullens Lane
Timeline item 3 - complete
Pilot live in Bullens Lane
July 2021 till present
Timeline item 4 - complete
Receive ACCOM award for artificial intelligence excellence
Timeline item 5 - active
Development of system in four new sites
December 2021 to March 2023
Timeline item 6 - incomplete
Active system in five laneways
from June 2023