Growing Number of Universities Adopting Innovative Social Distancing Technology to Make Campuses Safer Amid COVID-19 Pandemic
As higher education institutions plan to reopen their campuses, Occuspace offers a cost-effective, privacy-friendly solution for helping promote social distancing and avoid overcrowding
SAN DIEGO (August 4, 2020) – Occuspace, an IoT occupancy data solution provider, today announced its safe social distancing sensor technology is gaining adoption among higher education institutions planning to reopen their campuses amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. As university officials actively address student re-population strategies to limit the spread of the virus, they are leaning on new technologies to provide additional safeguards for students, faculty, and staff.
Occuspace’s real-time people counting sensors and corresponding consumer app, Waitz, are becoming increasingly valuable crowd monitoring tools for school administrations and students. Today, UC San Diego, UC Irvine, University of Oklahoma Libraries, University of Rochester, McGill University in Canada and others are using the Occuspace sensors, helping to keep over 300,000 students safer and more aware of the spaces they are planning to enter.
In fall 2020, the University of Rochester is planning a hybrid online and in-person approach to meet standards of physical distancing. The university recently adopted the Occuspace technology as a proactive foot traffic monitoring solution for concentrated locations on campus starting with their main Rush Rhees Library.
“Students need safe places to study and find community while adhering to social distancing requirements,” said Lauren Di Monte, assistant dean digital and research strategies for the University of Rochester. “We’ve started opening up our library spaces to provide more areas for students to gather and Occuspace empowers them to make responsible choices about where they can and can’t go.”
The Occuspace sensor technology is plug and play and requires no infrastructure changes to start monitoring crowd density in large locations. The sensor monitors Wi-Fi and Bluetooth signals in an area to estimate how many people are present with 90 percent accuracy. Building staff can see immediately when the number of people in a given space is approaching its safe capacity limit. Additionally, the Occuspace Waitz app, free to download in the iOS and Android stores, shows live data to students letting them see how busy spaces are at any given time in order to make educated decisions about going places and feeling safe.
The founder of Occuspace is Nic Halverson, whose sensors spurred from a “dorm room idea” to know the busyness of the student library before trekking across campus only to find there was no space available. His people monitoring technology, developing during his time at UC San Diego, has since seen increased demand from universities that are actively addressing how to maintain safe and healthy spaces for students ahead of the fall semester.
“Walking into a crowded building used to be an inconvenience, but now it’s a matter of health and safety,” said Gary Matthews, vice chancellor resource management and planning for UC San Diego. “Students and parents are apprehensive about going back to school and the Occuspace Waitz app will continue to help students make informed decisions about where they are heading. Our support of Nic and his team in building the technology in our incubator program has benefitted the university.”
The company has seen a dramatic increase in interest with more than 35 other universities across North America in the pipeline with more being added each week. To learn more about Occuspace and how it works, visit https://occuspace.io.
Occuspace is changing the way universities and retailers approach monitoring occupancy to promote safe social distancing. The company’s real-time people counting sensory hardware and corresponding iOS and Android application, Waitz, help users monitor population density of a given space and can alert building staff when a space is approaching its safe capacity limit. Helping to rebuild trust through transparency, especially during a worldwide pandemic, Occuspace allows visitors to know when occupancy at an establishment is at the right comfort level for them. For more information, visit https://occuspace.io.