Package delivery by drone will soon be common. Amazon, Walmart, UPS and others are all trialing the technology.
With some design changes to our living spaces, package-delivery-by-drone could make package theft, a/k/a “porch piracy,” a thing of the past.
What’s needed is for designers to come up with a system not for the last mile, but for that last ten feet: How does the package get into the recipient’s home? If drones just drop deliveries unattended in the driveway, as has been shown in concept videos, it will do nothing to stop package theft. Furthermore, how could residents of dense urban apartment buildings also benefit from drone delivery?
I propose a design competition: Home Design Changes to Enable Secure Drone Delivery. The competition should span urban, suburban and rural areas, and could encompass either retrofitted designs or ground-up changes. (For the sake of design fun, we’d assume no onerous regulations, i.e. drones could fly directly to apartment windows in crowded cities.)
Some examples of categories:
What if the top story of apartment buildings were designed with a rooftop drone package reception center for the entire building? Would residents take the elevator up to retrieve their packages, or could a system of dumbwaiters spirit packages downstairs to the mail room? Or would there be some other system, say smart lockers?