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SwRI named statewide integrator for Florida intelligent traffic systems

San Antonio -- January 13, 2004 -- The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) has chosen Southwest Research Institute® (SwRI®) to develop and deploy a standard, statewide software system for intelligent transportation system (ITS) transportation management centers (TMCs).

Under an $8 million contract, SwRI will provide eight new TMCs with a statewide transportation management center software library system, and provide four existing TMCs that currently use separate, proprietary software systems with a migration plan so that one district's TMC computers can communicate with others.

Initial deployment will be in the TMCs for FDOT District 4 at Ft. Lauderdale, District 6 at Miami and District 7 at Tampa, said Dr. Steven Dellenback, project manager and an Institute Scientist in the SwRI Automation and Data Systems Division. In time, other FDOT districts such as District 3 at Tallahassee, expressway authorities such as Miami Dade Expressway Authority and local governments such as Lee County will be added. The contract is for five years but could be extended to nine, he said.

Using compatible equipment and software, traffic management centers across the state can obtain regional as well as local data, and the state can better support traffic management to optimize traffic flow.

"Allowing ITS systems in various cities to communicate with each other can help Florida to optimize tourism traffic on one hand, and also to implement emergency evacuation plans when needed," Dellenback said. "Southwest Research Institute will provide installation and support under the contract to help coordinate those activities."

ITS systems include such things as closed-circuit television, dynamic message signs, ramp metering, roadway weather devices and highway advisory radio. SwRI is being assisted in Florida by P.B. Farradyne Inc., a developer of ITS systems.

SwRI has more than a decade of experience with ITS development, deployment and operations and has served as the statewide integrator for ITS systems in Texas for the past six years. Under a license agreement with the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT), SwRI will leverage significant portions of the TxDOT ITS software in its design of the FDOT statewide ITS library system. ITS software from Maryland also will be leveraged in SwRI's solution.

For more information, contact Joe Fohn, Communications Department, (210) 522-4630, PO Drawer 28510, San Antonio, TX 78228-0510.

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