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Costain to add traffic management tech to A2/M2

Connected road

Costain is to play a key role in a trial of a hi-tech road system in South East England.

The contractor has been awarded a deal by Highways England to deliver roadside technology on the A2-M2 corridor between London and Dover.

Costain will work with the road investment body, the Department for Transport, Kent County Council and Transport for London to design, install and implement the connected vehicle corridor.

Trial vehicles will be fitted with onboard technology to communicate with roadside units via 5G wireless systems. Information such as road works, conditions, temporary speed limits and time remaining before a traffic light turns to green could be sent to the vehicles.

Phase one is due to begin this November, initially covering a 4km stretch before a 19km test takes place next spring. Subject to a successful review of this phase, a 55km trial will be undertaken in 2020. The entire London to Dover A2-M2 corridor could be using the connected technology by the summer of 2020.

The project is part of the Interoperable Corridors Initiative, under which the UK is partnering with the Netherlands, France and Belgium.

Highways England safety, engineering and standards executive director Mike Wilson said: “Having the technology in place to allow vehicles to connect to each other and the road around them has the potential to improve journeys, making them safer and more reliable by providing real-time, personalised information directly to the driver. It could also help us manage traffic and respond to incidents.

“The A2-M2 trial will test and demonstrate how this may work in the real world.”

Costain chief executive Andrew Wyllie said the trial was an “important step” in making roads safer and improving journey time reliability.

Costain will work with Mott MacDonald, 4way Consulting, TRL, Kapsch TrafficCom AG, Altran, Cohda Wireless, Telent Technology Services and Telefonica on the trials.

The London Assembly transport committee earlier this year urged Transport for London to better prepare for connected and automated vehicles. 

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