WSP’s concept for the ATM EMCS was to create a new breed of motorway control system, allowing the Highways Agency freedom to trial new and innovative traffic management techniques.
The Active Traffic Management pilot aims to reduce congestion on a section of the M42 motorway in England between junctions 3A to 7, through the combination of existing and emerging Intelligent Transport System technologies and innovative traffic management techniques, e.g. controlled motorways, hard shoulder running. The project will be seeking to make best use of the existing carriageway without the need for major civil engineering works.
In order to explore these new technologies and techniques the Highways Agency recognised the need to procure a new control system, free from the limits imposed by the technology employed in their current systems.
The ATM EMCS will receive traffic data from vehicle sensors located on the motorway. It will process this data, along with information input from other sources, to anticipate the onset of congestion. Motorway signs and signals will then be set proactively to avoid or minimise the effects of such heavy traffic flow and to warn motorists of any queuing vehicles in the road ahead.
The ATM EMCS Consultancy contract was let in January 2003, to WSP and its project partner SEA. The contract provides for the concept design, specification, safety management, development and delivery of a control system that will deliver the technical capability to allow the ATM concept to be fully realised and establish a technology base which can be used, should ATM be rolled out to other parts of the English motorway network.
Key benefits delivered by the system:
- Flexible, allowing it to be applied to a number of different areas and to cope with a changing operational environment;
- Scalable, allowing it to be used on different schemes, where there may be more, less or different types of detectors and signals;
- Upgradeable, so that it can be adapted throughout its life, either to modify its capability or to accommodate changes and improvements in technology;
- Open, specified and built so that widely available standards and technologies are used or can be added;
- Sustainable, allowing the operational support and development of the system for an extended period, without having to procure a newly developed system;
- Demonstrated safety, delivering an appropriate and approved safety case based on the principles of IEC 61508.
Client: Highways Agency
Project size: N/A
Project value: in excess of £12m