Community & Environment

Smart Hamilton exhibit taps into Fieldays travel times

Some of the technology Hamilton City Council uses to manage our transportation network is on display at this year’s Fieldays.

The Smart Hamilton programme, supported by Hamilton City Council, is showing how data and technology can help improve the flow of vehicle traffic, detect incidents, manage events and enhance safety on our roads.

Smart Hamilton’s display shows where vehicles came from to get to Fieldays, where they went after leaving, and travel times for key routes around the event.

It uses technology that is applied every day to help reduce congestion in Hamilton.

Our Transport Data Scientist, Dale Townsend, says the Fieldays attracts large volumes of traffic, with travel times a key consideration for visitors driving to the event.

“So we created the display around something that is hopefully of interest, as a way to engage them with what we’re doing to make Hamilton easier and safer to get around.”

The data, which is completely anonymised, is gathered by sensors which have been installed alongside roads around Hamilton and the Waikato.

These sensors respond to certain Bluetooth technology in vehicles as they are travelling past, which allows monitoring of the flow of vehicles around Mystery Creek. The display also shows similar models of where people travel from to access The University of Waikato, Hamilton’s CBD, and The Base.

Mr Townsend says the data from these vehicles provides a robust sample which is combined with other initiatives to proactively help make Hamilton’s roads safer and more efficient.

“Hamilton is growing and this has an impact on our traffic volumes,” he says.

“Modern technology allows us to collect useful data to see what is happening on our roads, and it gives us the tools to better manage the transport network for all users, not just people in cars.”

The Smart Hamilton display is part of the Hamilton City Libraries stand in the Careers and Education Hub at Fieldays.

For more information about the Smart Hamilton programme, go to hamilton.govt.nz/smart 

Image: Left, Hamilton City Council Transport Data Scientist, Dale Townsend, with a visitor to the Smart Hamilton exhibit at Fieldays.

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