Traffic Management, Workshop in Graz
A workshop with international traffic experts was held on 13 April 2005 in Graz. Against the background of global CIVITAS/Trendsetter issues such as the improvement of mobility and quality of life, the improvement of air quality as well as the reduction of noise and traffic congestion, the workshop participants presented a variety of measures and technical solutions for the improvement of traffic flow... Read more in the upcoming newsletter.
Graz: Data collection via taxi
Similar to other comparable European cities traffic in the Styrian capital Graz is about to exceed its limits. In order to effectuate a significant change in the actual situation, the city will establish an Advanced Integrated Traffic Management System. One of the main advantages of the system is the simultaneous use of already existing systems. The GPS-equipped vehicles of the taxi fleet 878 will be playing a decisive role in this new concept: The cars of the fleet – in total more than 200 – will act as permanent traffic observers that report the actual traffic data to the taxi headquarters. Based on this “Floating Car Data“ a fairly accurate prognosis of the future traffic situation should be possible.
Fritz Busch from the Technical University of Munich has been consigned by the city of Graz to develop the new system. “What we need are adequate traffic management measures as well as consistent measurements,“ Fritz Busch says. Both should lead to a satisfying user acceptance. Apropos user acceptance: It is also planned to provide the data for individual traffic planning via the Internet. “This should be possible in the course of this year,“ announces the project leader Winfried Höpfl. Later the data can be recalled by mobile phone.
10-15 % reduction of travel time
The goal of the project is clearly defined: “We want to reduce the travel time by 10-15 %,“ says Gerhard Rüsch, City Councillor of Graz. To achieve this objective a second main focus is aimed at the optimization of the inner-city traffic lights. 33 traffic lights will be joined together in an on-line controlled network. The system which is called MOTION and which has been developed by Siemens will not only optimize traffic in one-way streets but also at cross connections. “As a result traffic flow is distinctly improved and waiting time is reduced,“ says Jürgen Mück, Product Manager of Siemens.
MOTION which already has been successfully installed in other European cities like Copenhagen, Prague or Stuttgart will be tested in Graz during this summer.
Further successful projects: MATRIX, TUC, ISA
A wider notion of the term Transport System forms the base of the Stockholm model of an alternative system for the on-line depiction of a real-time traffic situation. “Transport System is not only something that moves goods and people from one point to another but also a system that generates information and data. The thing is to get the traffic related data and process it in a proper way,“ says Alf Peterson from the Swedish Road Administration. Based on the fact that travel time is of value for everyone participating in traffic systems, a unique system called MATRIX has been created providing real-time information for current traffic flows as well as real-time traffic flow estimations. By various devices and methods (loop detectors, microwave detectors, GPS-reports, taxi and other commercial fleets) data are collected and subsequently processed into a well operating monitoring and supervising system. At www.trafiken.nu traffic participants can obtain a detailed overview of the current situation.
TUC (Traffic-responsive Urban Control) is an easy to implement control strategy that employs advanced automatic control methodologies. Until now TUC has been tested and evaluated in the cities of Chania (Greece), Southampton and Munich. Elias Kosmatopoulos from the Technical University of Crete: “After the successful implementation of TUC we tend to undertake further improvements in order to make the system more efficient.“
Finally Karin Bäfver, Sweco, reported some experiences of an ISA project in The Hague. ISA stands for Intelligent Speed Adaptation and the goal is to provide drivers with a simple system that supports them with information and warnings.