Parks as Magnet Destinations - The Need for Comprehensive Sustainability
State and National Parks have always been magnet destinations for tourists, hikers, nature enthusiasts and everyone in between. The ‘conservation conversation’ goes hand-in hand with all elements of sustainability: Environmental, Social, and Economic. Bigbelly has worked with parks worldwide to advance sustainability and environmental preservation through the deployment of Smart Waste & Recycling solutions.
Welcome, Oklahoma State Parks, to the Bigbelly Family!
Oklahoma State Parks is the newest innovator in the Bigbelly worldwide Parks community, deploying stations at Beavers Bend and Quartz Mountain. However, Oklahoma State Parks is taking Smart Waste a step beyond efficiency & beautification.
Not only have the Parks deployed Bigbelly to reduce collections, operating costs, and CO2 emissions – they’re leveraging Bigbelly’s smart capabilities to deploy strategic Wi-Fi hotspots throughout the parks.
The Parks’ multipurpose Bigbelly fleet is a game-changer, delivering operational efficiency, security, and an unprecedented guest experience.
Reducing Waste Collections & Increasing Efficiency
Oklahoma State Parks mapped & deployed their Bigbelly Smart Waste fleet to increase capacity and utilize the stations' fullness sensing capabilities to improve collection efficiency. The parks' traditional open-top waste bins were spaced anywhere from 15-20 minutes apart and required staff to allocate hours each day to collect them. Now with their Bigbelly fleet, park staff only need to make a trip once or twice per week to collect (in comparison to at least once a day with traditional bins.) Parks maintenance staff only collect Bigbelly stations when they receive an automatic email notification from their CLEAN Software Management Console.
Saving Time & Reallocating Resources
Parks value their staff and their precious time. Quite frankly, they will only adopt technology that makes their staff more efficient. With the dozens of hours that the Oklahoma State Parks team has saved on waste collection, the Parks now allocate their maintenance staff's time to tasks that had previously taken a backseat. The staff now focuses on upkeep projects like brush trimming, clearing trails, and removing trees that had been problematic for years. The Parks were finally able to address these important projects with their existing teams, without having to hire outsourced work. Maximizing maintenance team efficiency has been especially critical given the financial challenges faced during COVID-19.
Total Waste Containment: Cleanliness & Pest Abatement
What would a park be without its wildlife? As essential to a park as bears, raccoons, deer, birds, and insects are, they are not essential to picnics. Oklahoma State Parks faced the classic challenge of pest abatement during both day and night. Previous open-top barrels would attract insects like bees and flies when visitors enjoyed picnics, and provide a food source for nocturnal rodents overnight. Now that the Parks Bigbelly units provide total waste containment, pests are cut off entirely from their food source, and picnic-ers aren't swatting flies or dodging bees. Total waste containment also implies NO windblown litter, which is not only an environmental conservation concern, but also a public health essential.
Bigbelly Wi-Fi Hotspots: The Game-Changer
In addition to the fundamental benefits of Bigbelly's solution, Oklahoma State Parks was thrilled with the opportunity to deploy Wi-Fi enabled stations throughout the parks. Oklahoma State Parks had begun to lay down fiber, however this infrastructure is often expensive. Bigbelly Wi-Fi stations do not require fiber, so the Parks were able to halt fiber installation and realize instant cost savings.
The Parks now provide visitors and staff with wireless access throughout trails where cellular service is scarce, and are able to incentivize foot traffic by enabling setting daily Wi-Fi availability schedules. Visitors are drawn to the Parks during certain hours (and to certain areas) where WiFi is available, and are less likely to visit when Wi-Fi is unavailable.
Wi-Fi at Visitor Check-In Stations
Remote check-in has been an essential tool for the Parks throughout 2020, and will become even more important as the 2021 season approaches. Previously, when visitors arrived to check-in (especially after hours for campsite reservations), they were often unable to connect to cellular service, and required a staff member to arrive onsite. Now that Wi-Fi is deployed in Bigbelly Smart Waste stations, visitors can check in efficiently at all times of the day. Ensuring reliable, socially-distant, check-in is crucial to guest experience & safety.
Visitor Support & Custom User Experience
- Supporting Mobile Parking Payment: Bigbelly Wi-Fi also supports the mobile parking technology used to pay for parking passes onsite. Revenue generated from visitor parking was often hindered by poor connectivity; Smart Waste Wi-Fi ensures that the Parks can process parking fees reliably.
- Custom Browser Landing Page: Bigbelly configured the Parks' Wi-Fi access points to direct browsers to Oklahoma State Parks' main website, and the Parks are able to adjust their landing page whenever they like! Bigbelly Wi-Fi customers can create an enhanced browsing experience.
- Content Filtering: Bigbelly Wi-Fi customers have full agency over the types of web content permitted on their networks. This helps to keep data usage efficient and appropriate for its intended purpose.
Learn More About Bigbelly Wi-Fi & Parks Deployment!
Want to learn more about Bigbelly's Wi-Fi enabled stations and how to implement Smart Waste in your community? Connect with the Bigbelly team - we can't wait to work with you!