Councils to be allowed to charge for road closures

BBC News

Councils in England would be allowed to charge utility companies by the hour for roadworks which cause significant disruption, if government proposals are approved. The plan aims to halve the delays motorists endure due to utility works. Roadworks cost the economy £4bn a year due to delayed deliveries and people being unable to get to work on time. The proposals follow successful trials in London and Kent which saw severe congestion fall by more than 50%. The charges aim to encourage utility companies to avoid busy routes and times, and to work together to avoid repeatedly digging up the same piece of road.


Department for Transport looks up to AI to end holiday jams

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The UK Department for Transport is planning to make use of artificial intelligence (AI) in the future to end holiday jams resulting from roadworks. Navigational apps powered by the disruptive technology, which will be developed to implement the same, are expected to help drivers to plan their trips. The apps are expected to give drivers the confidence to plan their key trips without the fear of getting stuck in traffic, apart from reducing congestion, delays and air pollution. The department said that the government will be opening up data on planned changes to the road network, showcasing possible traffic jams up to months in advance. This change in policy is expected to help motorists enjoy quicker and easier getaways on bank holidays in the near future.


UK Government Plans To Reduce Traffic By Opening Up Data To AI Firms

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The UK government is waging a war on traffic. Yesterday, it announced plans to open up data on congestion, repair works and any other scheduled disruptions to Britain's road network. To make this data accessible to any technology firm that wants it, enabling such companies to develop AI-powered apps that provide drivers with not only real-time traffic info, but also ahead-of-time info. Traffic is an economic disease, and as a problem it's being made more acute by the growing number of vehicles on the road. In the UK, motorists lost 178 hours to road congestion in 2018, costing £1,317 per person and setting back the UK economy almost £8 billion overall.


UK government wants to fight holiday traffic jams with AI

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The UK's Department of Transport has announced plans to share data on roadworks taking place during public holidays. The government agency hopes that the datasets will be used by navigation companies like Garmin, Here and Waze – many of which rely on AI technologies – to optimize the flow of traffic. "Today's announcement will help open up data, reducing congestion, pollution and frustration for road users," said George Freeman, Minister for the Future of Transport. The government collects information on upcoming roadworks through Traffic Regulation Orders (TROs) – tools which allow local authorities to restrict, regulate or prevent the use of any public road. Under proposed legislative changes, tech companies would be able to gain access to this treasure trove of data and come up with solutions to potential traffic jams, months in advance.


UK must tackle 'astonishing' cost of congestion, study says

BBC News

UK drivers wasted and average of 31 hours in rush hour traffic last year, costing each motorist £1,168, a study suggests.