All About Unique Zones

In this guide, we will go through everything you need to know about Unique Zones. We will go over what a Unique Zone is, how it is implemented, using Unique Zones in StreetLight InSight, and how to check if your Zone is actually Unique.

Unique Zones can be Polygon Zones and/or Line Segment Zones. If you need a refresher on what a Zone is in StreetLight InSight, learn more.

What is a unique Zone?

A Unique Zone is a Zone, polygon or line segment, that has been used in at least one Project and that has different spatial characteristics from all other Zones used in Projects in your account or study. More details about what makes two Zones different is described later in this article.

When are unique Zones implemented?

Unique Zones are relevant primarily to Project Subscriptions (formally known as Pay-Per-Use Subscriptions). If your contract created after January 1, 2019, lists a number of Zones or a Zone band, a unique Zone quota will be applied to your Project Subscription account that matches the contracted number of Zones. The quota will limit the number of unique Zones that you can use in your analyses.

Unique Zones are also relevant to Consultant Marketing Subscriptions. Each study within the Consultant Marketing Subscription is not limited to a specific number of unique Zones but will track the number of unique Zones used to help you determine what you will need when you create your Project Subscription contract.

 Unique Zones and their tracking generally do not apply to Regional Subscriptions.

How are Unique Zones Counted?

A Zone will only count against the Unique Zone Quota (or be displayed in the counts) when it is a spatially different Zone used in a confirmed Project. Subsequent Project runs with the same Zone will not further count against the Unique Zone Quota. Also, the same Zone used as both an Origin Zone and a Destination Zone (and/or a Middle Filter Zone) in a Project, is counted as one unique Zone, not two. This means that once you have created and used a Zone in a Project, you can use that Zone as many times as you want and it will not count against your Unique Zone Quota. Calibration Zones are never counted against the Unique Zone Quotas.

Zones are counted when the Project is created. However, if the Project is canceled, flagged for review, or goes to Error, unique Zones from that Project are no longer counted. Note that Zones for Projects that are in a review status are counted.

Unique Zones are still counted if the Project is deleted from under the states Available or Under Review. However, if the Project was deleted from one of the non-counting states (Cancelled, Flagged, or Error) those Unique Zones are not counted against your Unique Zone Quota.

How to Keep Track of your Unique Zones

Project Subscription

In StreetLight InSight there are various ways to keep track of how many Unique Zones you have used in your account. If you are logged into your Project Subscription you will be able to check how many Unique Zones you have used in three different locations: 1) the Account Overview and Activity tabs on the Account Management page, 2) the Manage Travel Projects page, and 3) when actually creating and confirming a Project.

Project Subscription: Account Management Page

Step 1:  Navigate to the three-lined menu button in the top left corner of StreetLight InSight.

Step 2: Click “Account Management”

 

Once you are in this section of the app, you will be able to see how many Unique Zones you have used on the Account Overview tab. In our example, we have not yet used any Unique Zones so our Unique Zone Quota is 50 and our Unique Zones Available (Quota - Used) is also 50 (50 - 0).

You can see similar information on the Activity tab. Of the Account Management page.

Project Subscription: Manage Travel Projects

Step 1:  Navigate to the three-lined menu button in the top left corner of StreetLight InSight.

Step 2: Click “Manage Travel Projects”

Once on this page (across all the tabs) you will be able to see your “Available Unique Zones” in the box in the upper right corner of the screen. In our example here we have used 3 Zones and thus still have available 47 out of our allotted 50 Unique Zones.

Project Subscription: When Creating a Project

Since unique Zones are counted when creating Projects, you will be able to see how many Unique Zones you have used when confirming a new Project. If you have a Unique Zone Quota, you a modal will pop up when you click “Confirm.”

This modal will have five pieces of important information:

  • “Unique Zone Quota Purchased”: How many Unique Zones you purchased based off your Contract
  • “Unique Zones Quota Available”: How many Unique Zones you have available in your account. This is calculated as Quota Purchased - Previously Used.
  • “Total Zones included in this Project”: How many Zones are being used in your project, regardless of whether they are unique or not. For example, if you use the same Zone Set with 5 Zones as both an Origin Zone Set and a Destination Zone Set, total Zones included in this Project will say you are using 10 Zones.
  • “Unique Zones Quota will be used in this Project”: Will tell you how many new Unique Zones you are using in the project you are confirming.
  • “Unique Zones Quota remaining after confirming Project”: How many Unique Zones you will have left after you have confirmed this project. This is calculated as Unique Zones Available - Unique Zones used in this Project.

 

Note: 

  • Once you have confirmed this Project, unless you cancel the Project, the Project is flagged from review, or the Project goes to Error, these Zones will be counted against your Unique Zone Quota, regardless of whether you delete this project in the future.
  • If you are having an issue with your Unique Zone Quota please reach out to support@streetlightdata.com 

Consultant Marketing Subscription

If you are logged into your Consultant Marketing Subscription, you will be able to check how many Unique Zones you have used in each study 1) on the Study Management tab under the Account Management page and 2) in the upper right-hand corner on the Manage Travel Projects Page.

Consultant Marketing Subscription: Account Management Page

Step 1: Click “Account Management Page”

Step 2: Click “Study Management”

Under this tab, you will see how many Unique Zones used in all of the studies under your Marketing Consultant Subscription. This information is available under the Study Statistics column.

Consultant Marketing Subscription: Manage Travel Projects

In the upper right-hand corner of the page, you will see a counter for how many Unique Zones you have used in the individual study.

What to do if you have run out of Unique Zones Quota?

In a Project Subscription, there are two ways to request more Unique Zones. If you have run out of Zones or are nearing your quota, you can use these two ways to get in touch with your Account Representative and discuss getting more Unique Zones: 1) on the Account Management page or 2) when confirming a Project.

Account Management Page

Step 1:  Navigate to the three-lined menu button in the top left corner of StreetLight InSight.

Step 2: Click “Account Management”

Once in the Account Management page, Account Overview tab, you will be to click “Request More Zones” in the top right corner on the tab. This will trigger an email to your Account Representative, and will also send you an email documenting your request.

While Confirming a Project

The other location you can Request more Unique Zones is when you are confirming a Project. When you are confirming a Project, and you are out of Unique Zones you will have the option to “Request More Zones.” Like the Account Management page, you will receive an email documenting your request, and your Account Representative will be alerted to your request.

Note: 

  • Pay attention to the “Unique Zones Quota Remaining after confirming Project” section. This will tell you how many Unique Zones you will need to complete this Project. This may be helpful when figuring out how many Zones you need.

What Changes Lead to a New Unique Zone?

There are several ways to create Zones and Zone Sets: drawing new Zones, uploading a shapefile, or copying and editing a Zone within a Zone Set or the Zone Set as a whole. Changes that affect the spatial aspects of the Zone will trigger a new Zone. Changes to the attributes of the Zone, such as the name or direction, will not trigger a new Zone.

Changes that DO NOT Trigger a New Zone:

  • Changing the Zone name
  • Changing the Zone direction or bi-directional status
  • Swapping the start and end gates of a Line Zone
  • Changing a Polygon Zone from Pass-through to non-Pass-through, or visa versa
  • Copying a Zone or a Zone Set
  • Downloading a Zone Set to a shapefile and uploading it again even if changing any of the items above
  • Uploading the same shapefile used for another Zone Set
  • Adding or removing calibration data

Changes that Trigger a New Zone:

  • Redrawing a polygon or line Zone
  • Editing the boundary of a Zone
  • Changing the shape or location of the gates of a Line Segment Zone
  • Drawing a Zone

Note: You can create as many Zones as you want, but remember that new and edited Zones are only counted against the Unique Zone Quota when used in a Project.

How does StreetLight InSight Determine Uniqueness?

In order to count unique Zones, the platform assigns each Zone a “fingerprint” based on its key spatial characteristics. A fingerprint is composed of a pair of 64-bit signed integers. You can see the fingerprint when you download available Projects from the platform. The download includes a zones.csv file which includes two columns: “fingerprint1” and “fingerprint2”. The fingerprint (or pair of numbers) is the combination of these two columns. StreetLight InSight counts two physically distinct Zones as the same unique Zone if they have the same fingerprint (if the pair of fingerprint1 and fingerprint2) are the same for both Zones.

In the example below, Zone 1 and Zone 2 are one unique Zone even though they have different directions because they have the same values in fingerprint1 and fingerprint2. Zone 3 is a new unique Zone from Zones 1 and 2 because it has different values in fingerprint1 and fingerprint2 even though it has the same direction as Zone 2. 

Note: Due to how a fingerprint is counted, some minor changes to the spatial aspects of a Zone will not lead to a new Unique Zone. If you have questions about this reach out to support@streetlightdata.com. 

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