Future Mobility Starts Not with a Bang
Since the 2012 Olympics, SCOOT® has come a long way. Not only by being the heart of our own UTC, Powered by SCOOT® 7, but by building for the future. The first iteration of this is realised in SCOOT 7.0, which brings SCOOT® up to meet the demands of 2020 transport and beyond. With a number of new major enhancements and functionality along with bug fixes from prior releases of SCOOT® on the market, SCOOT® 7 is ready to meet future mobility. Fundamental to this is:
- The adoption of a vendor agnostic approach and secondly,
- Open data.
In the context of not only GLOSA, but the shape of future mobility, investment in the road network and supporting infrastructure in making cities and urban areas smarter, the importance of data in the Connected part of CAV or indeed CAM (Connected and Autonomic Mobility) cannot be understated. Where historically data access has been difficult, expensive or not possible, a change was needed and a challenge to the status quo. Unlocking data is the key to our journey and means we are ready when the unexpected is thrown our way.¹
Does the enablement of GLOSA, or any form of connectivity, from TRL Software’s UTC need an Olympics scale level of investment? No, it is already there as one part of the cooperative data services. In fact, our UTC is already thinking beyond GLOSA with focus on the Connected in CAV, it’s all a matter of having the data. It’s a data driven exercise.
Like with GLOSA in part 1, at face value it’s a simple concept. However, this time the reality matches up; the provision of an open data portal as part of the UTC was not difficult. Once you can access the data, what are you going to do with it? What happens now? That’s the where it gets complicated.
An unenviable challenge facing Local Authorities is trying to understand the gap between today’s systems and the tomorrow, which is heralded as everything is connected.
Today we have what we have, and tomorrow we are told that everything will be connected, but no one has the how to get from now, to the future. There won’t be a single big bang moment, nor a mass replacement across entire regions of roadside technologies, but an incremental change, and this change will be data driven.
You take stock of what you know and what you have. You understand what data is available to you, what more can you get. What is your network? Where are your signals; the shape, size and type of roads in your network? What data do you have and what new data can you get?
We set about starting to address those question and asking more. You start with what you have, ask what does good look like, and go from there.
We are here today. Future Mobility starts now. Innovation with new and novel data sets is leading us to realisation in the form of Network management tools for insight, analysis and predicative capabilities that currently come from very large, very complicated, very expensive models. A predictive model giving comparable and/or better without the “let’s build a traditional model” approach. A model without the model if you’ll indulge.
GLOSA isn’t all that exciting, but when you see it as part of the journey currently being written on how mobility changed, you begin to think of what comes next and that is where things start to get interesting. The journey needs fuel and direction though, which is why we are working the Alan Turing Institute via the Turing Internship Network. Knowledge is power, and the more we share and develop the smoother the journey to future mobility will be.
Find out more about our journey at Highways UK 2020, book a meeting now. Want to find out more about our work with the Turing Internship Network? Stay tuned.
¹ Just look at Transport for Greater Manchester’s recent presentation at the 2020 JCT Traffic Signal Symposium. The plethora of data available to them made dealing with the pandemic that much easier.