Limited in Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) infrastructure as well as the number of ITS field devices being utilized in other parts of the state, Alabama Department of Transportation’s (ALDOT) West Central Region sought innovative ways to gain information about events adversely affecting the area’s transportation network. The answer? A new state-of-the-art Traffic Management Center in Tuscaloosa that would not only improve traffic operations and safety but also foster improved communication, coordination and cooperation among the Department’s various partners and stakeholders.
Having worked with ALDOT on a number of projects, including the provision of staffing operations for its Montgomery Regional Traffic Management Center (RTMC), Gresham Smith was selected by our client to staff and operate its new Tuscaloosa RTMC. Since operations began on the University of Alabama (UA) Campus in July 2017, the RTMC has become an integral part of ALDOT’s transportation systems management and operations, providing real-time traveler information to the public through Algo Traffic.
Days a Year
Scoring Big with UA
From day one, the RTMC began connecting with regional partners and stakeholders—including UA/Alabama Transportation Institute, the Center for Advanced Public Safety (CAPS), the Tuscaloosa Department of Transportation, the Mercedes-Benz U.S. International plant and public safety agencies—to cultivate a better understanding of how each plays a role in the regional transportation network, and to identify the needs and goals of each of the partners. The RTMC’s close alliance with UA includes working with the university during home football games to ensure UA Gameday traffic runs as smoothly as possible.
A Spotlight Feature
Working closely together, ALDOT and Gresham Smith transitioned the Tuscaloosa RTMC from startup to operating five days a week, eight hours a day, and ultimately to 24/7 operations within just three months, growing the center within a year to become one of UA’s spotlight features. Today, ALDOT and Gresham Smith personnel are on duty around the clock, 365 days a year, utilizing the Department’s Intelligent Transportation System and other state-of-the-art technologies to help make West Central Alabama’s roadways more efficient, and perhaps most importantly, a safer place for the traveling public.
“My vision for the Tuscaloosa Regional Traffic Management Center was forming a team of people committed and passionate about the improvement of safety, mobility and commerce. We continue to look beyond traditional methods and are not content with the status quo. We have cultivated partnerships in the public and private sector, which will help improve our regional transportation system for years to come. I am very proud of what our team has been able to do and what the future holds.”
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