Pützchens Markt is a historic street festival that has taken place in Pützchen, Beuel near Bonn every year for more than 650 years. Placed in an area with many narrow streets and houses, the organisers are deploying MONICA’s crowd, capacity and staff monitoring tools to handle congestion and incidents.

The history of Pützchens Markt, known locally as the fair of the well, goes back to the worship of the German Abbess Adelaide (970 – 1015) who conjured up a well by throwing her crosier into the ground.

The village was named after the well, attracting pilgrims to its healing water. Soon traders started to put up tents and stalls to sell their goods. Gradually, a fair developed which continued to expand and Pützchens Markt was born.

Today, the festival takes place the second week of September and offers all kinds of attractions from traditional merry-go-rounds to more than 550 commercial stalls. The five-day event attracts around 1.4 million visitors of all ages who can enjoy the festival for free.

Pützchens Markt is located in a residential area in Pützchen, Beuel, near Bonn. The area is 4.5 km long, covering 80,000 m2. There are six entrances and four main roads that lead to the main attractions. Photo by Bundesstadt Bonn/Volker Lannert.

Monitoring crowd congestion

Pützchens Markt faces a particular challenge with crowd bottlenecks due to the characteristics of the venue area. Especially two of the six entrances accumulate a critical mass of people during peak hours.

The MONICA crowd and capacity monitoring solutions will support Pützchens Markt to tackle the challenges by monitoring crowds with four cameras installed at critical places and one camera attached to the MONICA blimp.

Map of MONICA deployment at Pützchens Markt. The red arrows mark the most frequent entry roads, the blue dots are cameras and the purple dot is the command centre from where the event is monitored, using the COP dashboard. The yellow/blue markings illustrate the two possible positions of the blimp, which is equipped with a camera. Monitoring will take place 7th to 10th September 2018.

The cameras count the number of people and analyse the crowd density and flow. Monitoring and decision support modules enable the organisers to predict and detect critical situations where the crowd density is about to exceed the safe level.

Additionally, an evacuation simulation tool is available to use after the event, based on visitor numbers captured.

Coordinating tasks and handling incidents

By equipping the staff with GPS trackers, the event organisers can locate them via the COP dashboard and thereby have an overview of the work force at all times. The purpose is to coordinate tasks effectively and improve response time in the case of incidents, since they can now also be detected by the system.

The results from the demonstration will be used to improve the solutions for Pützchens Markt in 2019.

The demonstration entails deployment of four cameras, a blimp with a camera and 15 staff tracker devices which connect to the MONICA IoT platform and the MONICA COP dashboard. Staff trackers are used in more challenging venue settings where narrow pathways, lots of high stands and attractions make the installation of base stations for the MONICA staff wristbands complicated.