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Challenge / Goal

The objective was to make the beaches safe and minimize the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic by ensuring social distancing on the beaches.


Combining novel and innovative solutions for the control of gauging and human resources present on the beaches, the solution was:

  • Delimitation of accesses

16 beach accesses were set up with the following: demarcation of areas of stay and walk; entry and exit itineraries through a bidirectional corridor with fixed beaconing; dynamic beaconing every day for the walk areas along the shore; and vertical signage and horizontal signposting.

  • People counting sensors

People counting devices were installed at the regulated accesses. They are equipped with 3D vision technology sensors that calculate in real time the number of people entering and exiting through each access. Periodically, this information is sent to the Smart City platform through the use of 3G/4G communication routers. Devices and digital cardboard are powered 24 hours a day with the use of solar panels.

  • Data management platform

All the information and all the urban beaches are managed through the Santander Smart City Platform, which dynamically calculates the maximum capacity and integrates information in real time. This information consists of: characteristics of the beaches; lifeguard and lifeguard services (flags, jellyfish); weather and sea state forecasts; influx of people sent by the counting devices; real-time images of the beaches; and maximum capacity data, obtained from drone flights and simulations of beach flooding with different tidal coefficients.

  • Beach gauging web page: "Santander a punto".

Real-time information is available to beach users through the website: There you can see the occupancy rate of each of the beaches, the state of the beaches through panoramic images of the webcams installed, flags and alerts of the rescue and lifeguard services on each beach, weather conditions and sea conditions, the services available on the beaches and their location, and the rules of use and security measures implemented.

  • Digital signage and QR codes

Digital signage was installed at the authorized accesses. It consists of the use of different types of signage (LED display, LCD monitor or traffic lights) and information on the degree of occupancy of each beach by means of a color code (green, orange, red). They are integrated with the Smart City platform and therefore receive information in real time. All signs include QR codes for access to the beach website.

  • Controllers and educators

Personnel were hired for control, information and awareness-raising tasks on the beach. They consist of 6 security assistants and 12 environmental educators. The security assistants are in charge of controlling and limiting access to the beaches when the capacity is reached. They also inform about the nearest beaches with lower occupancy. The environmental educators carry out information and awareness-raising activities on the beach, providing information on hygiene measures, distancing, use of masks, available services, cleaning and waste collection, etc.



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Santander City Hall

Service providers


End users

All citizens and tourists

    Main benefits

  • Improving life quality

  • Increasing safety

  • Improved data accessibility

  • Enhancing tourism experience

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