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The Role Of Ict In Controlling Traffic Congestion

754 words - 4 pages

The burgeoning cities population is attributed to transport inefficiencies in urban areas. Traffic congestion arises when the demand for road exceeds the capacity of the available infrastructure. It is estimated that traffic inefficiencies cost Nairobi city 50 million shillings daily, which translates to 18.2 billion shillings annually through lost productivity, fuel consumption and environmental pollution (Mungai, 2012). ICT, which involves storage, retrieval, manipulation, and transmission of information electronically, is the basis of modern intelligent transport systems and the ever growing mobile phone technology which are transforming the transport sector.

Intelligent traffic ...view middle of the document...

Crowd sourcing of traffic information has been achieved through the use of Mobile phone applications such as the ‘waze’ which has been applied in Malaysia to detect and map traffic congestion to warn drivers. Traffic data collected by the mobile applications is used by drivers to avoid congested streets and by the cities management to deal with traffic inefficiencies on time and come up with better policies and transport infrastructure.

ICT has also turned the world into a global village. Accessibility of information from any part of the world through telecommunication devices has transformed the way people work, shop and socialize. The new concept of transport substitution though debatable, holds that some journeys have been replaced through the use of ICT by the wider society. People are able to engage in home based telework, participate in conferences through videoconferencing, shop on-line and socialize through social media. This limits the need for people to travel. According to Ilan (1988), ICT leads to modification of travel patterns rather than reduction in volumes hence beneficial from the transport point of view, if people change the timing of the trips, or spatial changes which reduce traffic congestion.

It is apparent that, ICT has both direct and indirect impact on traffic congestion. ICT has created a platform for real-time collection of data, timely analysis, and efficient dissemination of traffic information. This has resulted to timely management of traffic incidents and prediction of future...


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