Why ParcelHack matters- background info

The UK parcel sector generated almost £9 billion in revenue in 2015, with growth expected to increase by 15.6% in 2019. The sector is characterised by many independent players competing in an ‘everyone-delivers-everywhere’ culture, leading to replication of vehicle activity.

With road space in urban centres being increasingly reallocated to pavement widening, bus and cycle lanes, there is growing interest in what impact our changing retail behaviour, from the high street to shopping online, is having and what solutions there are to help solve the last mile delivery problem.

ParcelHack will cover two themes:

1) The impacts of last mile parcel operations on the environment, energy and fuel consumption

  • Mapping pollution and strategies for reducing it
  • Respecting pedestrians and other road users in delivery areas
  • The scope for using shared use facilities to ease kerbside congestion (e.g. shared public transport/freight drop-off points, communal locker boxes.)
  • Reducing energy/fuel used per parcel
  • Rethinking stem mileage and the benefits of using drop-off points
  • Rethinking vehicle and infrastructure choices to serve the last mile

2) The impacts of last mile parcel operations on congestion, infrastructure and land use

  • Reducing the numbers of vehicles needed for last-mile through collaborative working
  • Minimising kerbside dwell time and optimizing drop-off locations
  • Maximising vehicle capacity
  • The impact of personal deliveries to workplaces
  • Understanding how vehicle arrivals vary by land use
  • Mapping deliveries/collections by postcode
  • Extrapolating parcel demand across land use


ParcelHack data description

CitySprint (the UK's largest same day courier network) will provide datasets for this hackathon. The data will show both jobs done by CitySprint over the last year as well as the location of couriers during the execution of these jobs. Included in the data is the location of the delivery, the time window within which the delivery is booked and the minute by minute location of the courier during the execution of the job.

This data has all been randomised and obfuscated in order to protect customer and courier information as well as to comply with the latest GDPR rules around data privacy and security.

 Other publicly available data sources will be introduced at the kick-off networking event.

ParcelHack project ideas

  1. What can the data show about pollution? Can we use the data we have to reduce our carbon footprint?
  1. Can you identify any delivery corridors? Are there routes which are used more than others?
  1. How can we minimise kerbside dwell time and can we optimise drop-off locations?
  1. Are there any strategies which could reduce the number of vehicles needed to make deliveries?
  1. What is the biggest bottleneck in the collection-delivery pipeline according to this dataset and what are the solutions to this problem?


data schema


Head back to the ParcelHack homepage...