After a competitive procurement, the Virginia Department of Transportation selected TransCore, a unit of Roper Industries (NYSE: ROP), to design and build its I-66 Active Traffic Management system on Northern Virginia’s main highway into the District of Columbia. The $34 million contract is 90 percent federally funded and will support 34 miles of highway from the District of Columbia to Gainesville US-29 in Prince William County. The project is scheduled to be operational by the fall of 2014. The I-66 corridor is one of the most congested interstates in Virginia and throughout the country. Because of limited right-of-way and construction funding, employing active traffic management technology can optimize mobility along the corridor by more effectively managing the congested conditions and increase safety, and reduce fuel consumption. “TransCore remains at the forefront of providing the most innovative intelligent transportation systems to improve trip reliability and maximize roadway capacity across our nation’s infrastructure,” commented Tim Fischer, TransCore’s senior vice president. “We’re pleased to support VDOT as it undertakes such a signature ITS project in the country." The active traffic management system will continuously monitor traffic and roadway conditions around the clock, collecting data using roadway monitoring equipment such as vehicle detection sensors and closed-circuit television cameras. The system will use such techniques as lane control signal systems, adaptive ramp metering, enhanced detection and camera systems, lane management systems, and queue warning systems. Active traffic management systems have been used throughout Europe for the last decade, but this is a relatively new concept in the United States. Benefits of the I-66 ATM system for motorists include:
- Dynamic message and lane control signing advising motorists on incidents and delays by providing direction on lanes that are usable, and guidance on merging traffic;
- Expanded use of shoulder lanes regardless of time of day in response to incidents and to manage traffic;
- Improved monitoring of the roadway to provide quicker response by transportation, safety and law enforcement personnel.