Traffic on the Mumbai-Pune Expressway will soon be streamlined and regulated by the authority of an Intelligent (or Highways) Traffic Management System (I/HTMS). As per reports, the MSRDC has decided to pull the project on a fast track, especially after the two-year delay. The lowest-bidder has been selected to implement the artificial intelligence (AI)-backed application in about 9 to 10 months, after testing.
AI-based application to enhance commuter safety
Standing as one of the busiest corridors in Maharashtra, the 94-km-long e-way linking Mumbai to Pune shoulders commute for over 60,000 vehicles daily. As such, the route witnesses severe traffic blocks along with accidents and fatalities, most of which are caused due to a breach of traffic rules and discipline. Cases of overspeeding, lane cutting, overloading of vehicles and unauthorised halts among others are frequent here.
Therefore, a traffic management system, such as the ITMS will help to upgrade the road for commuter safety, The application is linked with cameras and sensors to detect violations such as lane cutting and speeding among other road rage scenarios.
The AI-assistance has been programmed to alert the Central Command Centre to provide real-time updates to authorities and build an effective traffic regulation and management system here. The control centre will be located at Lonavala, while other monitoring stations will be installed at vehicle counters and toll booths, an official informed.
Provisions & systems of the ITMS
The ITMS will be established at an estimated cost of ₹160 crores for a decade on a Public-Private Partnership (PPP) model. This will include the setting up of Average Speed Detection Systems at 39 locations and Lane Discipline Violation Detection System at 34 points.
Plans also suggest that all entries of the expressway will have Weigh-in-Motion machines for goods vehicles. Apart from this, an Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) system will be wired in all violation detection cameras as well as toll booths to facilitate penalty collection. Other CCTV cameras for general surveillance and wrong way entry detection will be put up at 130 locations.
11 Weather monitoring systems and 23 Variable Messaging Sign(VMS) boards will also be stationed along the Mumbai-Pune route. Around 36 High-tech mobile surveillance vans with related equipment, speed guns, e-challan machine and a vehicle tracking system will further round up the system, read reports. As per reports, all applications will be implemented, operated, maintained and repaired by the contractor - in association with allied services.
24-hour traffic footage to aid police management
All equipment and applications will remain live throughout the day which will increase vigil here. These cameras and sensors will gather data of vehicular traffic along the stretch, at all times, and relay it to the Central Command and Control Centre.
This footage will be analysed here to prepare responsive systems and protocols to curb traffic violations. It will further help to mitigate traffic-like situations and warn the commuters of any roadblock or repair work ahead.