New ‘rich data’ technology will keep London traffic moving

New data analysis software is being introduced to help keep London’s traffic moving in a bid to ease congestion and improve road safety.

Transport for London (TfL) has awarded a contract to information technology company Sopra Steria to develop a new control centre that will allow staff to keep an eye on all 360 miles of the capital’s roads that it oversees.

The software will be able to interpret and display constantly updating data about congestion, bus performance, weather and roadworks, as well as including any incidents on the road network and what is being done about them.

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TfL says the goal is to generate rapid incident alerts that it can pass on to relevant authorities, such as local councils or the emergency services. It could also be used to provide routing assistance to general road users.

Glynn Barton, TfL’s director of network management, said: “We’re working to completely overhaul the way we manage London’s road network as we tackle some of the biggest challenges our growing city faces, such as poor air quality, road danger and congestion.

“Our world-leading work with Sopra Steria will enable us to respond to incidents on the roads much more quickly, keeping the roads safe and clear and helping to keep London moving.’

Adrian Fieldhouse, Sopra Steria’s managing director for government, said: “Our vision is to empower government to make a difference to everyone, every day, through the services we design and deliver. The new control room system will make use of rich data to enable TfL to keep citizens and visitors alike safe and on the move through the city’s road network.”

TfL says this move is part of its ongoing strategy to use modern technology solutions to better manage the road network. Last summer, it announced a project with tech giant Siemens to develop technology that would allow it to analyse congestion in real time and optimise traffic lights in response.

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