Traffex, the biennial traffic exhibition held at the NEC near Birmingham and organised by Brintex, took place last week. Traffex was traditionally a tarmac & cones type occasion but reflecting the rising importance of ITS in the UK traffic sector, for the past ten years or so ITS has been conspicuous with the two prime spaces by the entrance taken by Siemens and Imtech, who did so again this year. Coming up with very impressive stands were Redspeed and Swarco though, so the traditional Traffex landmarks may not have it their own way forever.
ITS (UK) and the CIHT help Brintex with the seminar programme and we both have our own adjacent slots in the exhibition, where we dispense coffee and seating to Members who want to hold meetings or just rest up for a bit. The one thing more tiring than working an exhibition is visiting one.
ITS (UK) was supported by our President Steven Norris who spent time with our Members on their stands after he had officially opened the show, gave an opening address in the seminar theatre, and stayed on to chair a morning of interesting talks on everything from signage regulation to road worker safety.
Our stand was sponsored by TSS Aimsun and GRID, who both spent time with us on the stand meeting fellow Members and catching up.
The overall feel was the most positive for at least six years – business is improving, the ITS sector is coming together around collaborative ways of working, helped by a more positive approach to standards and specifications and the work of the European Commission with the ITS Directive, and the arrival of Highways England is very promising in terms of the chance for longterm vision, planning and investment – in that order. The more stable your environment, the easier it is to form and hold on to a long term vision – and the HE arrangements promise that stability.