New ‘talking’ signs unveiled in Luton to give updates on floods and development plans
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New ‘talking’ street signs and stickers have been placed around Luton as part of a flood project.
The pilot scheme from the Environment Agency and Luton Council keeps people up to date with the town centre’s green space developments and tell them about flood risks in their area. Residents can have two-way conversations via text by scanning the QR codes found on the Hello Lamp Post. These codes can be found on lamp posts, railings and a floor sticker in the Mall.
People can give feedback on green space projects and access to the River Lea like the Hat Gardens and further plans to improve the river corridor in the town centre. It will also encourage residents to sign up to a flood warning service to find out more about making their homes safe.
Cllr Javed Hussain said: “It’s really exciting to be using this new technology and a new way to talk to people. Users will be able to find out what measures they can take to reduce their own flood risk in an informative and imaginative way as well as learn more about the opening up of the River Lea as part of Luton's Town Centre Masterplan.”
Leanne Wilson, EA flood digital project manager, said: “We have successfully worked with Hello Lamp Post in other parts of England to share information on flood risk and allow people to share their thoughts, but this is the first time we have used this technology in multiple languages.
" We are delighted to be working with Luton Council to help people learn more about flood risk in their local area, be prepared and find out what people think of the local environment”.
Anyone with a mobile phone can scan the QR code or text the number on the sign to start a text conversation, which they can do in various languages. Talking with the interactive persona is free, apart from usual SMS message rates, and does not require any app downloads or form filling. The council says all responses collected will be anonymous.