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Canadian University Dubai students develop solution to ease parking across the city

by Belinda Breeze

Innovation wins AED 5K first prize at Brand Me Summit

A team of students from Canadian University Dubai (CUD) has created an innovative solution that aims to ease parking trouble for motorists across the city.

Developed by second-year students, Ramisha Ahmareen Zaman and Fatma Ahmad Alattar, the Rent-a-Parking platform was awarded the first prize of AED 5,000 at the Entrepreneurship Showcase, staged as part of the recent Brand Me Summit. Held at the university’s City Walk campus, the ground-breaking CUD student-led event showcased the power of personal branding, featuring a line-up of distinguished speakers, entrepreneurs and public figures.

Inspired by their own daily challenges with parking around the city, Ramisha and Fatma set out to explore how they could redeploy unused spaces to increase capacity in high-demand locations. Fatma explained, “Dubai has one of the highest number of cars per capita in the world. One option would be to build more spaces, but we wanted to explore a more sustainable solution to the problem, where residents with unused parking spaces could offer them for rent.”

Describing how the system would work, Ramisha said, “We have built a dynamic online marketplace where people can list their available parking spaces in residential buildings. It enables renters to monetize their unused parking space while providing a convenient solution for drivers. The platform is available citywide, and spaces can be rented for varying durations, whether hours, days, or months, based on the user’s specific needs.”

Ramisha and Fatma were one of three teams of entrepreneurship students presenting their business idea to a panel of high-profile creators and innovators during the Brand Me Summit at CUD. Runners-up in the competition were Abdulla Mahmood Sanad, Anushka Naomi, Danielle Anne P. Avendano and Sukhroop Kaur with their innovation, Raybot+. The team showcased their prototype for a solution that assists maintenance teams in parks and public spaces, while also streamlining waste segregation. The other project on display was a smart infant feeding and nutrition tracker developed by the team Visionary Ventures.

The panel of judges included Ahmed Ben Chaibah, Founder & CEO of Aqua Fun; Dr. Mohammed Naji, Executive Director of Liberty Medical Group; Omar Al Ashi, Founder & CEO of Urent; Firas Al Msaddi, Founder and CEO of Fam Properties; Jigar Sagar, CEO of Creative Zone; and Mohamed Hilal, Founder & CEO of Mohamed Hilal Group, who also sponsored the competition prize.

The Entrepreneurship Showcase was moderated by CUD’s Vice President of Academic Affairs, Dr. Dima Jamali, who remarked, “This event provided an outstanding opportunity for these enterprising students to gain valuable insights from successful innovators in the UAE business community. We are grateful to the panel for their encouragement and for inspiring our students to continue pursuing their ideas to take the next steps towards creating their own start-up.”

After almost a year of work on market analysis and prototype development, Ramisha and Fatma are now looking to the next stage of their project. Fatma concluded, “We would like to explore investment opportunities and also develop the regulatory framework for the platform, which we hope to do in collaboration with relevant authorities like the RTA. The scarcity of parking spaces is a growing problem, particularly in urban areas, and we hope that our innovation can contribute to a sustainable solution to this challenge.”