Top Banner

US state selects smart mobility analytics firm to provide intelligent transportation solutions

The US state of Virginia has announced that it has selected a mobility analytics expert to integrate an intelligent transportation system aimed at alleviating and addressing urban mobility issues that have plagued the state.

The Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) chose Street-Light Data who will provide the organization with on-demand traffic information and data and transportation intelligence. It has been disclosed in an official statement released to the press that local, regional and state planning agencies across the state of Virginia will utilize VDOT's regional subscription to the innovative online Street-Light In-Sight platform which will transform big data from mobile devices into useful mobility metrics in an effort to examine and analyze travel patterns within Virginia.

VDOT has enjoyed a close working relationship with the mobility analytics company since first partnering with the firm in 2015. Street-Light Data has provided support to the transportation department on several major initiatives on a project basis. The project portfolio was diverse and ranged from a statewide travel demand model to transportation demand management projects in the Northern part of Virginia.

The emphatic success of those projects paved the way for VDOT to agree to implement and introduce Street-Light Data's Regional subscription platform to its systems. The platform enables all planning agencies and designated consultants across the state with unlimited access to transportation studies. In addition to this, it has been disclosed that VDOT which executed more than 360 studies whilst utilizing its Street-Light In-Sight Regional Subscription saved over $14m by disregarding traditional methods.

Deputy Secretary of Transportation at VDOT, Nick Donohue expressed his delight at the extension to their partnership with Street-Light Data and said this latest collaboration presented Virginia with the opportunity to really tackle its urban congestion issues and said the collection of data on mobility would enable it to structure strategies designed to transform the way it delivers its public transportation services.

He said, "Working with Street-Light Data has provided VDOT excellent opportunities to deliver on our goals of mitigating travel congestion and improving transportation offerings for the benefit of all Virginians. Using Street-Light In-Sight, we now have the ability to collect up-to-date mobility data for any project, no matter the size. Different agencies and consulting firms are all working with the same set of data, so everyone is on the same page. This power and flexibility help us maximize our efficiency and gain a better overall understanding of how our State moves."

Co-founder and CEO of Street-Light Data, Laura Schewel, said that the work it is engaged in with Virginia is reflective of the other projects it works with smart cities on and said the platform represented the future for the transportation in major cities wanting to become ‘smart' across the US.

Schewel said, "VDOT is using our StreetLight InSight platform to put big data to work for their core transportation projects like travel demand modelling, congestion busting, and commercial truck studies. That's very typical of the work we do with smart cities elsewhere, but it's more akin to a process change than a single project. We think of it as a systemic collaboration designed to bring Big Data into all of the different types of work that VDOT does."

Schewel added that the main challenge in working with VDOT and clients more generally is education and training because the technology is relatively new.

"The technology we offer is different from historic data collection methodologies. That means it's on us to ensure that our clients have the tools they need to take advantage of the transportation analytics platform. With quick and easy access to actionable transportation analytics, VDOT can make data-driven transportation investments that are guided by real-world travel behavior data. The key benefit of VDOT's regional subscription to our on-demand platform is the ability to use up-to-date, real-world transportation analytics for planning future infrastructure and policies. Transportation data collection is traditionally expensive, time-consuming, and complicated, but it's not with our platform."