Almost any commuter will say that city traffic is bad and getting worse. And official statistics show that in Australia and New Zealand, the total number of registered motor vehicles grows on average around 2% every year.
Growth in urban centres makes mobility a challenging issue. Roads are long-term infrastructure assets. Once built, it is very costly and disruptive to widen or redirect them, especially in inner-city areas. As metropolitan areas expand, transportation costs represent an ever-larger portion of household budgets.
We need technological solutions that allow us to manage traffic flow more efficiently – increasing the capacity of our roads while minimising delays and environmental impact. This technology has already proved its worth in many cities around the world.
Know what's around the corner
With vehicle-to-X technology, cars will be able to send and receive information about traffic conditions and obstacles long before they become visible for the driver. In this way, drivers can be informed in advance about, for example, roadworks or other obstacles and take an alternative route. Or the system can tell drivers what optimal speed to maintain in order to ride the green-light wave.
While delays are an inconvenience for most individuals, for the economy as a whole, they represent a significant cost factor – and not just on the roads. V2X technology is already being applied to trains, ships and aeroplanes. This kind of cooperative system goes a long way to improving safety and reducing traffic jams.
Experts estimate that a significant proportion of traffic in city centres is caused by drivers looking for somewhere to park. This costs a lot of time and adds unneccessary distance to each journey. The good news is that the frustrating search for parking spots could soon be obsolete.
The Siemens Integrated Smart Parking Solution helps drivers find available parking spots quickly and effortlessly, helping to reduce traffic, pollution and parking violations. Overhead sensors – mounted on street lights, for example – continuously monitor the parking situation and provide real-time information on where space is available.
Our smart parking solution can be used by driver assistance systems and by traffic information centres to enhance their services. It saves drivers time and cuts the distance they need to travel to find parking – accordingly, it helps reduce traffic volumes and CO2 emissions in urban centres.