Big benefits for Bangkok if Intelligent Transport Systems used: GSMA study

  • Better traffic management, plus improved commuting, environment and safety
  • Can reduce the number of road accidents by up to 8,000 per year
Big benefits for Bangkok if Intelligent Transport Systems used: GSMA study

DEPLOYING Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) in the capital city of Thailand could reduce travel times, carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions and road accidents, driving social and economic benefits of up to US$1 billion per year, according to the GSM Association (GSMA).
 
Citing its new research report, Building Digital Societies in Asia: Making Transportation Smarter, the association said that ITS can also potentially result in long-term positive changes in commuter habits and encourage citizens to use safe and environmentally friendly ways of commuting.
 
“There is a growing recognition of the significant benefits ITS can have on the environment, in improving productivity, safety and overall quality of life,” said Chris Zull, the GSMA’s spectrum director for Asia.
 
“ITS solutions have been successfully implemented around the world, particularly in developed countries, to address major transportation challenges.
 
“As mobile connectivity rates in Asia rise exponentially, dense metropolitan centres like Bangkok have a real opportunity to dramatically improve traffic flow, increase productivity, reduce vehicular pollution and even save lives,” he said in a statement issued by the GSMA.
 
ITS solutions integrate communication and information technology applications into the management and operation of transportation systems across all modes of transport, the GSMA said.
 
Applications range from traveller information and traffic management solutions to transport pricing and payment systems, as well as pedestrian and vehicle safety applications.
 
In a typical ITS solution, data collected from vehicles, infrastructure or users is aggregated, analysed and then delivered back to them, allowing for better informed and more timely commute decisions, the association said.
 
Increasing urbanisation around the world is putting more stress on city planners to make transportation infrastructure more efficient and safer, it added.
 
As the world becomes increasingly connected, advanced applications such as ITS provide innovative solutions to better manage traffic and enable users to be better informed and make safer, more coordinated, and ‘smarter’ use of transport networks.
 
All-round benefits
 
According to the new GSMA Intelligence report, implementing ITS solutions in Bangkok could lead to a reduction in travel time of between two to four days per commuter per year.
 
In addition, CO2 emissions contributed by road traffic could be reduced by 10% to 20%, or three to five million metric tonnes per year.
 
Lastly, ITS solutions could reduce the number of road accidents by up to 8,000 per year, possibly saving up to 100 lives or nearly a quarter of the annual road traffic deaths reported in Bangkok in 2013, the GSMA said.
 
ITS solutions can be delivered over a broad range of wireless and wire-line communications-based information and electronics technologies.
 
Given the broad range of public and private interests, an ideal ITS environment involves collaboration between the different stakeholders in the value chain, in particular automotive manufacturers and connectivity providers, as well as governments and their agencies, the GSMA said.
 
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