South-Wales council using state-of-the art traffic management system in a bid to prevent traffic congestion in city
Swansea council has installed a series of digital road signs designed to alleviate air quality problems by directing drivers away from congested parts of the city.
The state-of-the-art signs have been installed on Oystermouth Road, Quay Parade and Fabian Way. They will be linked to monitoring software that measures air quality and helps reduce traffic congestion by advising motorists to use alternative routes.
The signs are fed live traffic updates through a computerised transport system, known as the ‘Nowcaster’ system, which the council began trialling in February.
As well as redirecting traffic, the system is able to contact local media with information for travel news relating to congested areas.
The council has been keen to address concerns about air quality in the Hafod district of the city, after the area was designated as an Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) in 2010.
Once an area has been declared as an AQMA, the local authority must devise a plan to reduce air pollution levels around that location.
As well as trialling the Nowcaster system, Swansea council has installed air quality monitoring equipment, masts which measure wind speed and temperature and over 40 traffic counters at sites throughout the Swansea AQMA.
June Burtonshaw, Swansea council’s cabinet member for place, said: “We have been monitoring air quality in the Hafod part of the city for several years after declaring the area an air quality management area.
“The Swansea Nowcaster will enable us to monitor air pollution levels on main routes in and out of the city through Hafod.
“This is the first stage of a programme of works and, by changing the routes taken by motorists, air quality along the routes we are concerned about should be improved.”