Kampgrounds of America Inc. (KOA) unveiled the “Campground of the Future,” today (March 12) at RVX: The RV Experience in Salt Lake City. According to a press release, the “Campground of the Future” concept is a series of interactive animated illustrations that immerse viewers into a campground in the year 2030. This includes expanded technology offerings, sustainably constructed sites and facilities, and campgrounds engulfed within nature.
A few key features of the display include:
- Forest, mountain, urban, coastal and desert campgrounds nestled into the surrounding environment.
- Automated site selection and check in.
- Retractable roofs on cabins.
- On-site automated voice command technology for ordering services, signing up for experiences or delivery of necessities such as firewood.
- On-site recreation activities including hiking trails directly from the campground, enhanced water features and gathering spaces for groups.
Forecasting is based on KOA’s 55-plus years in leading the outdoor hospitality industry, expertise in campground innovation and design, and understanding of camper preferences and trends through the North American Camping Report (NACR), the company’s annual research initiative. The forward-looking concept builds upon KOA’s in-depth insights on the evolution of camping, which has measured how access to technology and especially social media while camping, has helped eliminate barriers to camping for those who are new to the activity.
After five years of surveying North American campers, the 2019 NACR shows the camping landscape is strong. New and lifelong campers are committed to the outdoor camping lifestyle as demonstrated by their diversity, camping more frequently and enthusiasm for using camping as a conduit to active outdoor lifestyles.
“With the increase in camping popularity comes a greater need to ensure the longevity of camping through smart design and preservation of nature,” said KOA’s newly named CEO Toby O’Rourke. “We believe that thoughtful use of technology and devotion to sustainably growing camping offerings will meet the increased expectations of campers, while further enhancing that connection with nature that camping provides.”
Several of the features displayed at the Campground of the Future exhibit already exist and are being actively tested on KOA campgrounds. Since 2010, KOA has encouraged its franchisees and campers to adopt eco-friendly practices through its Kamp Green program, with eco-solutions being deployed across North America.
“We have a massive solar parasol structure that covers two acres of RV sites at our Tucson/Lazydays KOA Resort in Arizona,” O’Rourke added. “That structure supplies more than enough power for the campground, while providing partial cooling shade for the RVs parked beneath it. That’s just one example of the futuristic steps that are already being taken.”