ITS World Congress 2022 is in the books. I joined over 6,500 people in LA to collaborate, learn, and explore ideas that will shape the future of transportation. From the expo floor to executive round tables, and learning sessions, there was so much energy and excitement to tackle some of the toughest challenges we face today.
Most of us take the transportation infrastructure and innovations around us for granted. Every day it facilitates the activities that move our society forward; commerce, logistics, leisure, agriculture, and many more. Unless you stop to think about all of the elements that go into planning, constructing, and maintaining the transportation systems, you might miss how important they are to all of us. Transportation is a critical part of our society and worth appreciating the effort, energy, and innovation happening to improve it for generations to come.
A few glimpses of the ITS World Congress 2022 event
When I think of our transportation systems and listen to Department of Transportation (DOT) leaders, three areas stand out to me. The first is that the systems we build must be safe. Rising fatalities are concerning, and while human behavior will always be a factor, there’s still much more work and innovation to be done to reduce fatalities.
The second is that the infrastructure must be resilient. Resilience to our changing weather conditions and ecological events must be considered in the planning and maintenance of our infrastructure.
Thirdly is that the transportation infrastructure we build must serve all people. Looking through the lens of how our transport systems can create equitable access to resources, jobs, food, education, etc., is something we can’t overlook.
After returning from the ITS World Congress 2022, I’m more energized to tackle these difficult and multifaceted issues. As a technology company helping our customers make better use of their data, we can actually move the needle on the three topics I mentioned earlier. I’ll share a few examples of what our SpringML Public Sector Team is doing.
We’re working with the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) to build systems that increase collaboration with contractors and construction companies. The “Contractor Zone” application is providing a much easier way for UDOT to interact with contractors and providing more visibility for these companies to work with the state on various road projects.
Safety analytics is another area we’re focusing on. Each state must collect data about crashes, which must also be shared with the federal government. These statistics traditionally have been used to show historical trends, but more can be done to improve the speed at which this data is collected in each state, and how the data can be used to predict and prescribe preventive measures to improve safety at both macro and micro state levels.
We’re also investing a lot in computer vision to turn traffic cameras and vehicle-mounted cameras into intelligent sensors. For example, in Memphis, we have developed and deployed a system that is helping them identify road issues, such as potholes and code enforcement violations. These cameras are providing the city with data and insights that are enabling them to address the issues proactively and with more precision.
This is just a small glimpse, but I hope you can get a sense of the exciting things happening in transportation. There’s lots of innovation, and lots more to do. And now transportation is poised for transformation. The ingredients are all there – passionate and smart people, electric and connected vehicle adoption, autonomous driving systems, 5G connectivity, and government investments to name a few. In fact, as part of the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill that was passed last year, there’s over $500 million allocated to the Strengthening Mobility and Revolutionizing Transportation (SMART) grant program. Our public sector team is ready to help you innovate to create safer, more resilient, and equitable transportation. Please reach out, we’d be happy to discuss your project, help you explore the SMART grant, or provide a demo of our transportation solutions.