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Australia’s leading real-time road traffic information provider, Intelematics, is changing the way Australian engineers and critical businesses are making decisions, with its recent Hoddle Street and COVID-19 analysis offering new insights into the way Australia’s traffic moves. 

 The company, which has been processing traffic data for over a decade from thousands of sensors in roads and infrastructure, probe vehicles and more – is now delivering accurate historical data, available in 15-minute intervals which can be analysed by month, year, suburb and street name, through its online data store.  

 “Our traffic data has been widely used by drivers, vehicle manufacturers, auto clubs, emergency services and government departments for over a decade. Now we are broadening its use, to those who plan, deliver and manage leading infrastructure projects, like engineers and policymakers, who can also benefit from accurate historical data. Before any traffic, transport or infrastructure project can commence, it is important to collect and analyse traffic volume and queue information, average speed, and origin and destination information for the project’s location and the surrounding area. Rather than performing a physical traffic survey such as a video recording or placing pressure tubes on the roads, engineers and policymakers can now more efficiently collect vital traffic information, almost instantly from the comfort of their homes,” said John Cardoso, Senior Product Manager at Intelematics. 

 In addition, with more and more money being poured into infrastructure projects, measuring their effectiveness is hugely important. For example, if a project doesn’t achieve its objectives, a before and after analysis can be conducted using historical data. Then, the learnings can be applied to the next project. If a project succeeds, then it could be used as a template for future projects. 

 “The icing on the cake is that Intelematics can also look at the effect that the project had on feeder roads – something that would have been near impossible unless every feeder road was also monitored with pressure tubes”, Mr Cardoso said. 

 Intelematics has recently extracted and analysed data for two critical events in metropolitan Melbourne – including one analysis that for the first time – used qualitative, segmented origin and destination data.  

 The first analysis was for the Hoddle Street continuous flow intersection – the first of its type in Victoria. Intelematics’ qualitative data was able to demonstrate that congestion reduced by 14 per cent thanks to the upgrade. 

 The second analysis was looking into the effect that COVID-19 had on congestion. Intelematics’ quantitative analysis showed up to an 88 per cent reduction in trips in March 2020; with 28 March 2020 recording, only 12 per cent of traffic compared to the average March peak. The qualitative research also found that Melbournians were spending up to 70 per cent less time travelling per trip which is a clear indication that people are abiding by the Government’s recommendation to only travel for essentials. 

“What was interesting about the COVID-19 traffic study was that this was the first time we had used qualitative traffic data by looking at trip origins and destinations. This new way of analysing traffic data allows us to conduct a much more granular analysis than ever before. 

 “Our historical road traffic data allows for decision-makers to have access to better quality information – which hopefully – will lead to better outcomes,” Mr Cardoso said. 

Intelematics recently demonstrated how organisations can keep their traffic projects moving throughout COVID-19 in a free webinar. The webinar recording outlines how data can inform projects at the planning, analysis and assessment stage; and how traffic data is being used to conduct impact analysis. To watch the webinar recording click here