Traffic signal management upgrade for Highways England

A contract to deliver a new central traffic signal control and management system for the south east has been placed by Highways England with Simulation Systems Limited (SSL) to meet both the immediate and future requirements of Highways England for England’s motorway and major A-roads.

Central to the contract will be Siemens Stratos – designed to be the UK’s first cloud-hosted, fully integrated traffic control and management solution; and Hosted- SCOOT – the highly successful real time UTC and adaptive traffic control system already used to manage and co-ordinate traffic control for 76 UK authorities, including the control of many existing Highways England junctions.

The Siemens Stratos system will replace the existing UTC control system for the M25 and bring the control of sites in central southern England and the south east under the control of the new system, which additionally offers expansion capacity for the other regional areas.

According to Gary Cox, Product Sales Manager, Urban Systems the functionality offered by PC SCOOT has already been migrated into Stratos to offer the module known as Hosted-SCOOT. ‘This allows UTC and SCOOT controlled junctions to be quickly migrated to Stratos control where the sites already have UG405 outstations and IP communications in place’, he said.

The development roadmap will deliver a new Traffic Signals Module to Highways England from April 2016. This module when linked to the latest generation of IP outstations will offer the functionality previously offered by the two separate systems on a single platform. This provides Highways England with a single hosted solution for both real time control and monitoring. This hosted system will be accessed through secure internet based connections providing the flexibility to operate the system from many locations by many operators.

Older sites can be easily upgraded by means of installing new UG405 compliant outstations and moving to IP communications, either by upgrading the existing analogue leased line to broadband or by the provision of easily deployed 3G technology. A planned move to IP communications as part of this project implementation will allow Highways England to avoid any potential interruptions to future control as a result of the planned withdrawal of any analogue communication lines over the next few years and it is recognised that Highways England has already made significant progress in this respect.

SSL Managing Dirtector, Louis Thompson heralded the award of this contract stating: “We are delighted to be awarded this prestigious contract that will provide Highways England with a future proofed solution with capacity and the potential to expand the service around the country.’  SSL will begin the roll-out of the Stratos equipment into the three regions in the coming months.

Siemens was established in the United Kingdom more than 170 years ago and now employs 13,760 people in the UK. As the world’s largest engineering company, Siemens provides innovative solutions to help tackle the world’s major challenges. Siemens has offices and factories throughout the UK, with its headquarters in Frimley, Surrey.