ITS United Kingdom makes Awards for excellence in Intelligent Transport Systems

March 15 2012

ITS (UK), the Intelligent Transport Society for the United Kingdom, has made four Awards for excellence in ITS:

  • The Rees Hills annual award for personal contribution has been given to Professor Phil Blythe of Newcastle University.
  • The Scheme of the Year award went to Dorset County Council for the Weymouth Showcase Programme.
  • The Forward Thinking award for innovation was made to Transport for London for Countdown.
  • The Young Professional of the Year award went to Martin Mildenhall of Transport for Greater Manchester.

The awards are open to any organisation or individual with a UK business office and that has a significant UK telematics or other ITS content.

The nominations were judged by an eminent panel of ITS professionals chaired by ITS (UK) President and former Transport Minister, Steven Norris. The Panel Members were:-

  • Simon Jones, Atkins]
  • Kevin Borras, h3b media
  • Dr Alan Stevens, TRL
  • Janet Cooke, London TravelWatch
  • Neal Skelton, ITS United Kingdom

The awards were presented by Steven Norris at the ITS United Kingdom President’s Dinner at the Charing Cross Hotel in London on 13 March 2012.


More details about the award winners:

UK Scheme of the Year

Winner – the Weymouth Showcase Programme

This is a comprehensive ITS programme to meet the challenge of Weymouth being the venue for the 2012 Olympic Sailing events.

Weymouth is a traditional seaside resort. The population doubles during the summer. A huge number of staying guests and day trippers visit, resulting in traffic congestion. This is due to the geographical location, an inadequate highway network and almost non-existing ITS.

The 2012 Sailing events will attract up to an additional 60,000 a day. The aim of the scheme is to provide network management, ensuring the Games are a success. At the heart of the Games are the athletes; it is important they can travel freely. At the same time we need to ensure “business as usual” for the rest of the town.

The Showcase will leave a legacy to ensure the continued development of the area’s economy.

The ITS elements introduced:

Signalization at critical junctions creating a SCOOT region optimizing traffic flow across the area
Real Time Passenger Information with on-street and on-vehicle displays and audio
Linking these two systems to provide intelligent bus priority at traffic signals

A car park guidance systems for town centre car parks with on-street variable signs
Strategic Variable Message Signs on the approach roads
Air Quality Monitoring system
CCTV cameras
Solar powered bus stops (for non RTPI stops)

Forward Thinking Award

Winner – Transport for London for Countdown

With over 1 million web hits and 17,000 texts sent per day, TfL’s brand new Countdown web and text service has proved to be a huge success with the public since its official launch in October 2011.

Countdown is the largest real time bus arrival information system in the world, providing passengers with bus arrival information for every one of London’s 19,000 bus stops, wherever they are. For the first time this information is available via internet and Smartphones, as well as text message. These digital information delivery channels are complemented by 2500 new generation on-street signs at key bus stops.

Young professional of the year

Winner – Martin Mildenhall of Transport for Greater Manchester.

Martin Mildenhall was heavily involved in the project management, design, installation and commissioning of the Bluetooth Origin and Destination Through Journey Survey Scheme in Bury, Greater Manchester. The scheme comprised the installation of multiple Bluetooth detection devices co-located with existing automatic traffic counters (ATCs) in a cordon around Bury town centre. The Media Access Control addresses from Bluetooth devices in vehicles and other devices are picked up at the Bluetooth sites as they pass them, providing information on where those devices/vehicles have travelled from and to within the cordon.

Martin demonstrated his ability and aptitude for managing complex technical projects by working with Drakewell Computer Systems to generate trip matrices automatically which could process the Bluetooth data sent in from multiple locations.

The proof of concept trial called on Martin to be responsive and resilient in resolving site technical queries as well as inputting into design of the product and the method for installing them alongside Automatic Traffic Count sites.

Neville Rees & Peter Hills Award for outstanding contribution

Winner: Professor Phil Blythe of Newcastle University

For 25+ years Phil Blythe has worked at the cutting edges of ITS pioneering research and application demonstrations in a series of important areas. He is a well respected academic with vision and the ability to break new ground. He has been the primary UK or EU technology innovator for demand management using contactless road user charging and connected vehicle–road systems; ticketing and travel payment by smart card; wireless devices for autonomous networks of flow or emissions sensors; information systems to research and support the deployment of low- or zero-carbon vehicles; the systems behaviour of transport and energy networks in a future low-carbon economy; and the use of ITS technologies to support older or mobility-impaired travellers. During TfL’s Road User Charging Technology Trials, Phil was an active member of the peer review group.

Phil’s work is characterised by three key elements: a facility for “seeing over the horizon” and thinking about issues before they become problems; the ability to conduct innovative research that bridges the technology-policy gap not just in terms of how technologies can support the delivery of objectives but also how emerging technologies might influence future policy thinking; and a record of simple, affordable demonstration of new technologies in action and their social implications. He is internationally recognised for his work. He remains an active steadfast supporter of ITS UK.

Previous winners of the Rees Hills Award: Prof. Eric Sampson, Dr John Miles, Richard Harris, Prof. Mike McDonald, and Ian Catling

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