The monitoring of activity on our city streets has a broad interest for local planners and policy makers.

This project stems from a desire to increase our ability to capture a wide range of information about different forms of mobility in cities, particularly walking and cycling, in order to support urban planners. With the pandemic, the work has taken on increased importance as it can help monitor how people use the streets during changing restrictions. Rather than installing a new sensor system, we are working to use the surplus capacity in the existing CCTV network. Many cities have extensive digital networks of CCTV cameras but most are used only infrequently for their primary focus of community safety or traffic control.

Aims and objectives

This project aims to develop methods to use CCTV images and video to produce regular statistics on activity levels in urban areas.

The project team will:

  • Develop object detection software to generate counts of pedestrians and vehicles from still and moving images from CCTV systems
  • Use image counts and traces though video to provide better understanding of how people use space
  • Develop an approach to implementation which does not require sensitive image data to leave the secure CCTV systems and does not interfere with general operations
  • Apply the tools to monitor activity on streets and public spaces across Glasgow, producing open data on these
  • Work with city stakeholders to demonstrate the value of these data for a range of policy areas.


Lead: Dr Mark Livingston

Team: Dr Andrew McHugh, Dr David McArthur, Luis Serra, Maralbek Zeinullin

GCPH Team: Bruce Whyte

GCC Team: Kimberley Hose, Keith Scott, Kalim Uddin

Latest Outputs