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Publication numberUS3110010 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateNov 5, 1963
Filing dateMay 1, 1961
Priority dateMay 1, 1961
Publication numberUS 3110010 A, US 3110010A, US-A-3110010, US3110010 A, US3110010A
InventorsSmith Richard R
Original AssigneeGen Signal Corp
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Traffic directing system for parking areas
US 3110010 A
Abstract  available in
Images(1)
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Nov. 5, 1963 R. R. SMITH TRAFFIC DIRECTING SYSTEM FOR PARKING AREAS Filed May 1. 1961 INVENTOR. R. R. SMITH HIS A'IITORNEY T74 TT mm mm" 0 1. 2 m LJI 5 52% me I United States Patent 3,11%,ill'h TRAFFZC DBECTENG SYSTEh i PARKING Richard R. Smith, Rochester, Nfa to General Signal Corporation Filed May 1, 1X3, Sier. No. linzfil-S 4 Claims. (Ci. Md-ST.)

This invention relates to a trafiic directing system for parking areas, and, more particularly, elates to such a system for directing vehicles with respect to a parking area and with a cautioning signal being employed for apprising vehicle operators of the space condition in such area.

In modern parking areas and garages, it is considered desirable to provide a counting system which registers the number of vehicles entering and exiting from a parking area so as to provide a running count of the number of available spaces within such area. Such a system is normally employed to control an indication means provided for directing vehicles into the area or away from such area.

The convenience of having such counting system to control the indication means mentioned above has been recognized by the prior art to the extent that such an indication means is controlled for directing vehicles into the area until such area is completely filled. When such area is filled to capacity, remaining vehicles are directed away from the parking area. It is also recognized that a predetermined number of vehicles be permitted to leave a parking area which has been filled to capacity before the detection means is once again controlled to direct vehicles into such area.

It is proposed in this invention to provide a system controlled by the counting system of a parking area for directing vehicles into or away from a parking area. This invention also provides for apprising the operators of vehicles that a given parking area is near capacity but has not been completely filled to capacity. It is further proposed in this invention to provide for cautioning veliicle operators being directed away from a parking area that such area has at least one available space.

Thus, one object of this invention is to provide a system for apprising vehicle operators of the nearly filled condition of a given parking mea.

Another object of this invention is to provide a system for apprising vehicle operators of the soon-to-beavailable parking spaces.

Other objects, purposes and characteristic features of the present invention will be in part obvious from the accompanying drawings, and in put pointed out as the description of the invention progresses.

The drawing illustrates one embodiment of this invention. I

Referring to the drawing, a differentially con ollasle counter DC, which indicates the number of available parking spaces, is shown as having an add coil and a subtract coil. In this type of counter, hot the add coil and subtract coil need only to be pulsed brieily to cause the counter to either add or subtract a count. The add coil is shown to be pulsed by the actuation of a button it), while the subtract coil is shown to be pulsed by the actuation of a button 11. Additionally, the add coil and subtract coil of counter DC may be controlled by an automatic control AC which can be a counting sys tem, as briefly mentioned above.

The counter DC includes a units decade UD and a tens decade TD each of which has a read-out control switch, such as switches R01 and R02 which are respectively controlled to positions representative of the count registered upon the corresponding decade UD or TD.

Signalling means 12 includes two arrows in and 1'7 and a circular indication l8. Arrow 16 when illuminated directs vehicles into the area, and arrow 17 when illmninated directs vehicles away from the area. The circular indication 13 provides a caution indication in conjunction with either arrow 16 or 17. Arrows 16 and 1'7 may be colored green, while circular indication 18 may be colored yellow, or as otherwise desirable. Moreover, it is considered as being within the scope of this invention to utiize the arrows 16 and -17 and circular indication 18 either in combination or separately for iridicating the capacity conditions of a parking area to a responsible person such as the parking area attendant.

Relay FR controls through its contact 20 the illumination of arrows l6 and 17. When relay ER is dropped away arrow 16 is illuminated, but when relay PR is picked up arrow 17 is illuminated instead. Relay FR can only pick up when the count registered by counter DC is 00 since only then will relay T67 be energized through contact 23 of decade switch R02 and relay U0 through contact 25 of decade switch R01 thereby completing a circuit for the energization of the wiring of re lay FR through the respective closed contacts 26 and 38 of these two relays Th and Utl. Once relay PR is picked up, a stick circuit is completed to maintain it energized through back contact 42 of relay U5 and front contact 43 of relay FR. Because of this, relay FR will remain picked up until there are five or more parking spaces again available since it is only when this condition is met that the stick circuit for this relay can be interrupted. Incidentally, if the number of vehicles entering the parking area should exceed its capacity so that counter DC will be operated beyond the 00 condition such as by being operated to the 99 condition, then relay FR will still remain picked up because then an alternate stick circuit will be completed through back contact 4% of relay Til and through front contact 43 of relay FR.

Before the parking area is filled to capacity so that relay PR is picked up, relay NPR is picked up. Thus, when the count registered upon counter DC is 04 so that relays Ti and U4 are energized, a circuit is completed to energize relay NPR through the closed contacts 26 and 27 of the relays T4) and U4 respectively. As the count thereafter is decreased below 04, relay NPR is continually energized since a stick circuit will be established for this relay through back contact 33 of relay Uil, back contact 34% of relay U5, and front contact 36 of relay NPR. This stick circuit will be maintained until the count reaches 00 at which time relay Uh will pick up and interrupt the circuit by the opening of back contact 33.

To summarize the operation thus far, relay FR remains dropped away as the count decreases toward 0 and is picked up only when the count actually reaches ()0 upon cormter DC. Until this happens, arrow 16 is illuminated so as to direct ineornin vehicles into the corresponding parking area, but when the count of 00 is reached, relay FR picks up and arrow 17 is then illuminated while arrow 16 is extinguished. Subsequent vehicles are then directed to an alternate parking area. However, from the time that the count on counter DC reaches )4 and until it reaches 00, relay NPR is picked up so that the circular indication 18 is illuminated and this indicates to arriving motorists that, although they are being directed by the illuminated arrow 16 into the respective parking area, there are only a few parking spaces still available in that area. Of course, when the capacity of the parking area has been reached so that arrow 16 is no longer illuminated, then it is no longer desired to illuminate the circular indication 13 and it is for this reason that relay NPR is controlled to drop away when the count reaches 00 on counter DC.

When vehicles begin to exit from the assuming parking area, relay NPR is once again controlled to a picked up condition for illuminating circular indication l8 and is maintained in such picked up condition until read-out control switch RG1 is effective to pick up a relay U5. More specifically, when the count registered upon counter DC ascends as additional parking spaces become available, relay NPR is again picked up. In the drawing, this is shown to occur when the count reaches 01. At that time, an alternate pick-up circuit for relay NPR is established through back contact 33 of relay U back contact 34 of relay U5, front contact of relay U1, front contact 46 of relay Ttl, to the winding of relay NPR. Upon the picking up of relay NPR the previously-described stick circuit is again completed, and since this stick circuit includes back contact 34 of relayUS, the stick circuit will be interrupted when the count of G5 is reached. In other words, as increasing numbers or" parking spaces become available, relay NPR which is picked up at the time the first such parking space becomes available, remains picked up until there are five such available spaces. Throughout this time, the circular indication 18 is steadily illuminated. As previously mentioned, the stick circuit which has been maintaining relay FR energized includes back contact 432 of relay U5 and this means that relay PR is also continually energized during this time that additional parking spaces are becoming available, and this condition continues to prevail until five parking spaces have been available so that relay U5 picks up. Throughout this time, therefore, arrow 17 has been steadily illuminated so that incoming traffic has been diverted to an alternate parking area. Concurrently, circular indication '18 has been illuminated to inform the incoming motorists that, although they are being directed to an alternate area, one or more spaces are now available in the parking area governed by signalling means 12 and that trafiic may soon again be directed into that area.

It is apparent from the drawing that the relays U4 and US could have their respective pick up circuits completed through other contacts of switch R01 so as to vary the illumination control of the arrows 16 and 17 with respect to circular indication 18 to provide the above-mentioned caution indications.

Having described a traflic directing system for parking areas, as one specific embodiment of the present invention, it is desired to be understood that this form is seheated to facilitate in the disclosure of the invention rather than to limit the number of forms which it may assume; and, it is to be further understood that various modifications, adaptations and alterations may be applied to the specific form shown to meet the requirements of practice, without in any manner departing from the spirit or scope of the present invention.

Vl/"nat I claim is:

1. In a parking facility having at least two parking areas, means for registering at each instant the number of available parking spaces in the first of said areas, signalling means being operable to present a first signal indication directing further incoming vehicles into said first area and to present alternatively a second signal indication directing further incoming vehicles to the second of said areas, means coupled between said registering means and said signalling means for controlling said signalling means to display said first signal indication so long as the number of available park-mg spaces registered by said registering means exceeds a predetermined number and to display said second signal indication when the number of available parking spaces registered by said registering means fails to exceed said predetermined minimum number, auxiliary signal indication means also controlled by said coupling means and being operable to display a distinctive signal indication for all count values registered by said registering means exceeding said predeterinined minimum value but not exceeding a predeterf mined higher value, wherebysaid first signal indication a is displayed by said signalling means and incoming vehicles are directed by said signalling means to said first parking area until said predetermined value is registered by said registering means but said auxiliary indication is displayed prior to the attainment of said predetermined minimum value concurrently with the display of said first signal indication by sa d signalling means to reby indicate the imminent attainment of a filled condition of said first parking area.

2. The invention as defined in claim 1 wherein said coupling means after operating said signalling means to display said second signal indication upon the attainment of said predetermined count by said registering means maintains said signalling means in a condition to thereafter display said second signal indication as the count registered by said registering means increases above said predeterm ned minimum value until said count regestered attains a preselected second value, whereby upon a decrease in the number of available parking spaces in said first area to predetermined minimum value results in the routing of further vehicles to said second area and vehicles are not again rerouted to said first area until the number of available parking spaces reaches said preselected value.

3. The invention as defined in claim 1 wherein said coupling means also controls said auxiliary signalling means to display said distinctive signal subsequent to the attainment of said predetermined minimum count by said registering means and for ascending values of said count until said count attains said preselected second value, whereby the concurrent display of said distinctive signal by said auxiliary signal indication means with the display of said second signal indication by said signalling means indicates to incoming motorists the probability imminent routing of further vehicles to said first parking area by said signalling means.

4. in a parking facility having at least two parking areas, first means for counting each vehicle entering the first of said areas, second means for counting each vehicle leaving said first rca, differential counting means governed jointly y said first and second counting means for registering the number of available parking spaces in said first area, signalling means governed by said differential counting means to display a first signal indication directing vehicles into said first area when the count regis ered by said differential counting means exceeds a predetermined minimum value and to display a second signal indi ation directing vehicles away from said first area and to said second area when the count registered by said differential counting means does not exceed said predetermined minimum value, and auxiliary signal indication means being selectively operable to display a distinctive signalling indication concurrently with the display of said first or second signal indication by said signalling means for predetermined count values registered by said differential counting means which exceed said predetennuned minimum value, whereby the display of said distinctive signal indication concurrently with the d splay of said first signal indication Warns incoming vehicles of the imminent routing of vehicles to said second area and the concurrent display of said distinctive indication with said second signal indication Warns incoming vehicles of the imrminent routing of further vehicles back to said first area.

Burn Sept. 20, 1949 Burn June 30, 1953

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2482610 *Nov 14, 1946Sep 20, 1949Burn Philip HAutomatic traffic directing device for garages
US2644150 *Jun 26, 1948Jun 30, 1953Burn Philip HAutomatic traffic directing device for garages
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US3349368 *Jun 30, 1964Oct 24, 1967Kates Peat Marwick & CoCoordinated control of traffic flow and parking
US3441719 *Apr 7, 1966Apr 29, 1969Hecon CorpMonitoring means
US3529284 *Jun 22, 1967Sep 15, 1970SodetegTraffic control system and signal equipment for use therein
US3893097 *Jun 3, 1974Jul 1, 1975Electrotec IncDispatching system circuit
US4021644 *Oct 16, 1975May 3, 1977Automatic Parking Devices, Inc.Circuit for monitoring the sequence of events at a cashier checkout center
US4114807 *Mar 23, 1976Sep 19, 1978Conservation Controls Corp.Control system
US6285297May 3, 1999Sep 4, 2001Jay H. BallDetermining the availability of parking spaces
US8971581Mar 15, 2013Mar 3, 2015Xerox CorporationMethods and system for automated in-field hierarchical training of a vehicle detection system
US9171213Mar 15, 2013Oct 27, 2015Xerox CorporationTwo-dimensional and three-dimensional sliding window-based methods and systems for detecting vehicles
US9286516Jun 11, 2013Mar 15, 2016Xerox CorporationMethod and systems of classifying a vehicle using motion vectors
Classifications
U.S. Classification340/932.2, 377/9
International ClassificationG06M3/00, G06M1/00, G06M3/14, G08G1/14, G06M1/10
Cooperative ClassificationG08G1/14, G06M1/10, G06M3/14
European ClassificationG06M1/10, G08G1/14, G06M3/14