DOT greenlights first phase of smart transportation pilot

DOT greenlights first phase of smart transportation pilot

Americans are constantly frustrated with high volumes of traffic on roads, potholes and poor driving conditions. And with oil prices still plunging, long-term U.S. traffic congestion is likely to only worsen.

However, investments by the Department of Transportation in vehicular communication and control systems may help open and maintain the flow of cars and trucks through the major transportation arteries.   

Transportation officials  issued a pre-solicitation notice for the Connected Vehicle Pilot Deployment Program. The notice, which focuses on the first phase of a project expected to take up to four years, seeks concepts that can be developed into workable models. 

DOT said the project aims ultimately to better connect drivers, vehicles and the infrastructure they use to produce better  informed travelers, enhance operational practices and transform surface transportation systems management. 

To achieve this, the agency wants to establish an interoperable networked wireless communications system  to transmit data between vehicles, infrastructure and devices used by drivers.  The data would  help improve transportation system performance and facilitate greater safety, mobility, public agency efficiency and reduced environmental impact on the nation’s highways and local communities, DOT said.

In the first phase of the project, DOT hopes to develop “an innovative and synergistic connected vehicle pilot deployment concept, to build partnerships among stakeholders, and to prepare a comprehensive pilot deployment plan that reduces technical, institutional and financial risk.” 

Phase 2, projected to take up to 20 months, is the actual design and test phase, and DOT will test the network’s  architecture and design, application integration and system interoperability testing.

In Phase 3, designs in Phase 2 will become operational, and key performance measures will be evaluated on a daily, weekly and monthly basis, according to the notice. DOT estimates Phase 3 will take up to 18 months.

The solicitation will be issued on or before Jan. 30, 2015.

About the Author

Mark Pomerleau is a former editorial fellow with GCN and Defense Systems.

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