The City of Ghent, Belgium, will implement a new dynamic traffic control system by mid-2022, which will inform visitors in real time about the current parking levels, the occupancy rate of the various car parks, traffic disruptions and much more.
A consortium led by Jacops, a company specialising in the installation of intelligent traffic infrastructure, Be-Mobile, a smart traffic solutions provider, and Q-lite, a Belgian manufacturer of LED displays, are all involved in the project.
The City of Ghent will replace current digital information displays that show occupancy in parking garages. New full-colour LED displays will be installed at 50 locations in the second half of 2022. These are designed to share additional traffic information, such as roadworks and events, or real-time travel times.
Digital signs will be installed just before the R4, the ring road around Ghent, to guide visitors smoothly to the park-and-rides on the outskirts of the city. In addition to replacing the physical signs, the traffic control system consists of a completely new central management system that will communicate with the displays according to the current traffic situation.
Jacops uses Be-Mobile software for the new management system, which combines various traffic applications such as parking and traffic control. The City of Ghent can share its own city and mobility information, such as information about parking occupancy and public transport, as well as link information from third parties into the system.
Furthermore, the most relevant parking and traffic information is automatically distributed to the road user or other stakeholders via the digital LED screens from the Belgian manufacturer Q-lite. The info on the new displays will be available via open data so that parking apps and route planners can incorporate it within their platforms.
“With the traffic guidance system, we reduce search traffic and can indicate in advance which car parks are full,” said Filip Watteeuw, alderman for mobility at the City of Ghent. “This way people can decide more quickly to use park-and-rides and we limit unnecessary car traffic in the city.”
The total investment of this new traffic control system, including maintenance and all software developments, amounts to €2.7m (£2.4m).