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The 26th JCT Traffic Signal Symposium & Exhibition

Wednesday 15th September and Thursday 16th September at Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham City Campus.

Special Events Sponsored by:


The 2021 Symposium was held at Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham City Campus on Wednesday 15th September and Thursday 16th September 2021.

The format of the event was the same as in previous years and included a Symposium programme filled with topical presentations, a specialist Exhibition, and plenty of opportunities to catch up with old friends and colleagues and network with new contacts.

The MOVA User Group was also held at the City Campus on Tuesday 14th September.


Overview

For 25 years the JCT Symposium and exhibition has been bringing traffic signal practitioners together with manufacturers and to maintain a sense of community amongst signals engineers. It is intended to run as an affordable conference that is accessible to as many people as possible, regardless of experience and that encourages the exchange of knowledge, experience and good practice. Over the past few years, the symposium has consolidated its position as the UK's best conference event for traffic signals.

The Symposium & Exhibition runs over two days, and is preceded by the MOVA user group. It mixes conference style papers, the principal manufacturers, networking opportunities and organised social events in the evening. As far as content goes, the emphasis is on the signals community itself and JCT seeks submission of papers and presentations from working signal engineers, manufacturers and suppliers. The broad appeal of the programme means that papers are also welcome from policy makers, interest groups, and academics. If you would like to share your experience with the signals community then please let us know and we will do everything we can to help you including subsidising attendance at this event.


2021 Symposium Papers

The Symposium Programme consisted of 24 papers from a range of speakers. The Symposium's papers are written and presented by the signals community itself and JCT actively seeks submission of papers and presentations from working signal engineers, manufacturers and suppliers as well as policy makers, interest groups, and academics.

Copies of selected papers to download will be available here shortly, as well as recordings from the event.

Keynote: Digital Standards for Describing Traffic Signal Installations
Darren Capes – DfT and Andy Graham – White Willow Consulting

As we move to connected and then automated vehicles, and a digital age for roads more generally, how we identify, specify, maintain and operate traffic signal and other infrastructure needs to change too.

DfT has started a Digital Controller Interface Specification project aiming to move the TOPAS 2500 form to a digital model of a controller. The first work on this area – on uniquely numbering controllers -will be launched for consultation at JCT and the second stage announced

Prioritising Pedestrians and Cyclists Safety
Pierre Trotobas – Flowell by Colas and Andrew Caleya Chetty – Starling Technologies

Managing streets, pavements & spaces in the 21st century is HARD. Complex interactions between different mobility users and the evolving road and pavement usage along with rapid technology and subsequent cultural change need to be managed in a way to protect and enable all users.

As our roads transform over the next 20 years with the addition of connected and autonomous vehicles along with new driving behaviour, how will the pedestrians, cyclists and other vulnerable road users, from the young to the old, zombies to the school kids not paying attention, safely negotiate these new intersections. Add to this a post COVID-19 priorities to keep everyone moving, reduce congestion and stop contact becomes a complex set of problems to address.

Within this new eco-system, how can technology, data and machine learning processes enable better pedestrian and cyclist safety. This presentation will share results and insights from on-road trials undertaken in France with Colas using data analytics and Colas Flowell LED road markings.

TRUGRD Stream Combined Radar/CCTV and NOVUS Data Aggregator for traffic applications
Peter Eccleson – Smart Video & Sensing

The new TRUGRD Stream combined radar/CCTV and NOVUS data analytics module for use in traffic data collection at either signalised junctions or dedicated data collection sites offers an intelligent 24Ghz multi lane radar with a 2MP inbuilt camera and is effective for detecting and classifying vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians.
NOVUS is an after-market add-on which provides count, speed, gap, headway, wrong way detection and classification and can be interfaced with the clients own back office or via our own hosted platform.

The presentation proposed will be delivered by Peter Eccleson with support from a 'local authority' representative and a product manager from Smartmicro GmbH in Germany.

Narrowing the Divide
Kevin Gilday – SRL

The paper will Talk about the coming together of the Portable and Permanent Traffic Control worlds, bringing enhanced features including control, monitoring and operational mode to the once isolated temporary traffic signals.

Untangling Canford Bottom
Tom Siddall – 4Way Consulting

Canford Bottom is a relatively compact hamburger style roundabout on the A31, near Bournemouth. As a busy trunk road and popular holiday route, the area can suffer congestion regularly, with Highways England receiving multiple complaints about the performance of the signals at the roundabout. The paper and presentation will focus on the works undertaken by 4way Consulting, in partnership with Kier and Highways England, to identify problems in the signal control, and to design, trial and validate simplified control of the site.

The paper and presentation will focus on the simplified MOVA control implemented, including a number of unusual, but comparatively simple, techniques developed to aid that revised performance, giving simpler, more consistent and more appropriate signal control.

Setting Up First Line Signals Maintenance
Robert Dean – Via East Midlands Ltd

The presentation will focus on the process we used in providing a first-line-traffic signal maintenance service in-house for the first time in over 25 years. I will look at the challenges faced and provided some advantages / disadvantages to running an in-house ITS first-line maintenance service.

Three years of developing AI for traffic signals- how far have we come, and what next?
Raquel Velasco – Vivacity and David Watts – TfGM

An overview of the project in Manchester, which will be finishing its original incarnation by then, a summary of the overall learnings, and an exploration of the (many) expansion projects coming from that.

Listening to the Voice of Experience and Working Together to Reduce Risks Associated with Working at Height
Ryan Churchill – NAL

Nobody goes to work in the morning expecting to have an accident or become a fatality statistic. According to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) working at height risks are one of the major causes of workplace injuries and deaths. Over the last 5 years c.25% of workplace deaths have been attributed to this risk, with an average of 34 deaths per year during this period (HSE 2020).

Ways in which this risk can be mitigated or reduced for employees whether on the installation or ongoing maintenance of traffic signal equipment is a key business driver for both employers and employees.

This paper looks at the importance of reducing working at height risks for traffic signal engineers, whether as part of the infrastructure installation or ongoing maintenance and how this should be a key consideration during the specification process. It will also discuss potential cost implications associated when working at height. Additionally, the paper examines how feedback regarding health and safety implications, received from a highly experienced Traffic Signals engineer, led the design of a product which facilitates a complete overhaul of historical working at height methods; typically undertaken when maintaining or installing applications on any highway structure.

UTMC is dead! Long live UTMC!
Simon Notley – Dynniq

The UTMC framework is an anachronistic relic based on technologies that are insecure, out-dated and largely unknown to anyone graduating as a software engineer in the last decade. By lazily specifying "UTMC compliant" rather than providing proper functional specifications, buyers are shutting out modern, innovative products that would deliver better value.

The UTMC framework is a triumph of collaboration. It is a textbook example of how the government-led development of standards can lead to the creation of valuable products that would not have emerged otherwise. Technically it is without competition, by specifying the transport layer, data model and architecture it guarantees plug-and-play interoperability in a way that no "modern" alternative can.

Find out who made these claims, and who was right, as Simon Notley (Dynniq's ImCity Product Manager) leads you on an exploration of recent trends and developments in the world of UTMC.

GLOSA at York with CarFlow
Nancy Bunyan – Dynniq and James Guilliatt – City of York Council

Dynniq and the City of York Council would like to share the innovations and challenges of bringing GLOSA to drivers in York. Areas covered: what it is and how it works; changes to existing equipment/systems; open data and SDK; and implementation experience.

Real Time Transport Modelling at the City of York
Michael Oliver – PTV and James Guilliatt – City of York Council

Historically, the City of York Council (CYC) manages the live transport network through staff monitoring CCTV and social media feeds, with Network Monitoring Operators (NMOs) and transport engineers manually implementing new plans and signal changes to ease network issues. In 2021, as part of a DfT-funded project called STEP, a Real Time Transport Model has been implemented to support NMOs to adopt a more pro-active approach in monitoring and influencing the network. In our presentation, we will explain to the Symposium the benefits of the Real Time Model for NMOs, and how it was integrated with live data assets including traffic signals.

TfL Bus Priority Update - extracting more and more value out of our bus priority system
Mike Bloomfiield and Chris Cockbill – TfL

In a follow up to last year's presentation ("Bus Priority in London – getting more out of what we have"), Michael and Chris will showcase the further work Network Performance Delivery have undertaken that is delivering ever increasing levels of bus priority in London without the need for new hardware. Innovation and data analysis is once again at the core of this presentation, but once again the focus is on extracting more from the existing system without deploying new equipment on street.

Evolution of TfL's traffic modelling guidance documents in response to London’s changing environment
James Wilson and Lucy Beeston – TfL

During this presentation, TfL introduces its modelling guidance framework, including the newly updated Traffic Modelling Guidelines document and the Model Auditing Process. The documents' editors will discuss the challenges faced in London since the last version of the Guidelines was published and how TfL's modelling processes have adapted to these changes.

Managing London’s recovery from the COVID pandemic
Andrew Wiseall and Golnaz Ghafghazi – TfL

Awaiting Synopsis

The role of ITS in improving quality of life through a Flood warning system in the Yorkshire Dales National Park
Andrew Walker – Swarco

This paper focusses on the role of ITS in improving quality of life through a Flood warning system in the Yorkshire Dales national park.

The project, in collaboration with North Yorkshire County Council included us creating a solution to deploy a flood warning system that worked to both advise drivers of the flood (or rising flood) on the road through electronic signage but also integrated into a larger system so that local residents could be advised about through the flood notification system. This would also create data that could be shared via the councils digital platforms such as social media and their website.

Not only would the system be responsible for advising drivers, tourists and local residents of the potential danger and give them time to make informed decisions but the data could be used by the council to understand any trends in rising water levels and incorporate them into their wider decision making processes for the safety and quality of life for its residents.

To add to this, the location is in a national park, a beauty spot that attracts lots of tourists all year round. Due to the remote location we are providing off-grid solutions that are sustainable and limit the impact to the beauty of the location and to the local wildlife. The impact of digging trenches, adding new power and the volume of street furniture has all had to be taken into strict consideration so that we can provide a solution that improves quality of life for the residents whilst having a minimal impact to the area ecologically.

Off Slip GLOSA – Emissions benefits and other trial outcomes
Paul Rose – Amey and Jon Andersson – Ricardo Automotive & Industrial

GLOSA - Green Light Optimised Speed Advisory - being the connected vehicle technology that provides signal timings in-vehicle, and includes speed advice to enable drivers to smooth their driving and get through the signals they are approaching on the next green with less acceleration/deceleration (start/stop). This Amey led Highways England funded project, on off-slips in the Greater Manchester area, using data from a (real time) link to TfGM's UTC system, has demonstrated both NOx and Carbon emission reductions for freight vehicles.

Predicting and comparing traffic management response plans to mitigate tail pipe emissions in real time
Gav Jackman – Aimsun

NEVFMA is the UK’s first fully operational, county-wide predictive model for the Highways England strategic road network in Oxfordshire. The model predicts not only traffic but also emissions, with a real-time, traffic-linked pollution dispersion model. This delivery uses a large-scale model of the county of Oxfordshire that is connected in real-time to ITS systems and uses traffic simulation to reduce congestion and harmful, traffic-related emissions.

The model was delivered for the Network Emissions/Vehicle Flow Management Adjustment (NEVFMA) project, funded by Highways England and delivered by Aimsun in partnership with EarthSense, Siemens Mobility and Oxfordshire County Council. NEVFMA uses the Aimsun Live solution to generate short-term predictions for traffic and nitrogen dioxide (NO2) dispersion to help traffic centre operators make the most effective traffic management decisions.

Initial Analysis at the end of 2019, of the 57% of the days evaluated emissions exceeded the annual legal average. On 65% of the days evaluated the system recommended a different traffic management strategy than a do nothing scenario, to bring Emissions back in line, and on those occasions, emissions were predicted to be on average 5% lower if a chosen strategy was deployed.

Further data has been analysed since April since UK traffic bounced back with lock down easing, and further data will be analysed during the summer in time for the conference!

TOPAS – It's for YOU!
Keith Manston – TOPAS

TOPAS has been in full operation since 2016, when it took over responsibility for maintaining the range of TR 25XX specifications relinquished by the Highways Agency, as it transitioned to become Highways England. Since 2016, the main focus of TOPAS has been to manage and update this suite of specifications and to develop new specifications where a need is identified.

Coupled with the TOPAS Registration process, which includes an independent assessment of compliance with the specifications, Purchasers now have a simple means to ensure that the traffic products they buy will perform in a safe, predictable and reliable way, without them needing to have the in-depth expertise necessary to be able to fully specify the products themselves.

But when buying traffic related products, how many Purchasers are currently actually requiring compliance with TOPAS specifications?

This presentation will seek to gain some insights into the current use of TOPAS specifications, particularly by Local Authorities and also provide guidance on how best to ensure that products purchased are compliant with the very latest TOPAS specifications.

Creating a new approach to adaptive traffic control
Dr Andy Hamilton – Yunex Traffic

Dr Felix Rudolph and Dr Andy Hamilton from Yunex Traffic (the new name for Siemens Mobility, ITS) share their insights and thoughts on both the challenges and opportunities of developing an entirely new adaptive control algorithm. The company is developing FUSION to replace existing technology, building on what’s good but delivering a step change in policy driven control, network awareness and efficiency.

A New Flexible Signal Phase and Timing (SPaT) Algorithm and Connected-ITS Enabler in Manchester
Ana Celino – Yunex Traffic

This presentation will review the development, application and impact of a new SPaT algorithm recently tested by Yunex Traffic (the new name for Siemens Mobility, ITS) in Manchester as part of Project Synergy. Deploying SPaT on the largest and most complex intersection to date has provided a number of insights into the value of SPaT and related C-ITS messages in the future deployment of connected autonomous vehicles . The presentation will share some of these findings and also consider the challenges and benefits of integrating SPaT and MAP messages with third party OBUs, and the generation and distribution of IVI messages.

IHE Passive Safety Electrical Guide 2021 – Electrical Requirements for Passively Safe ITS Roadside Installations to BS EN 12767
Alistair Gollop – Mott MacDonald

This presentation introduces the new IHE Passive Safety Electrical Guide which has been written by Alistair Gollop on behalf of the Institute of Highway Engineers. The necessity for the new guidance document has been heightened due to changes in the current version of the BS EN 12767 standard, which includes the removal of electrical requirements from the National Annex. Due to the complexity of cable arrangements found in typical ITS installations such as traffic signals, this omission poses potential problems to practitioners undertaking the design, specification or management of ITS equipment.

The guide therefore examines why Impact Electrical Isolation (IEI) systems should be considered when designing any roadside ITS installation, including those mounted on passively safe or traditional structures. It looks at why an IEI system may be required in addition to standard electrical protective devices, the different types of IEI solutions which are commercially available in the UK, and how the selection of the type of pole and column should influence the IEI technology used.

The Appeal to Novelty Fallacy: Transportation Data and Technology in an Urban Context
Christopher Kettell – TRL Software

A highly engaging critical review of the applications of transportation data and technology in the urban context, presented by TRL Software's Christopher Kettell. Covering the what we had yesterday, what we have today, what we need tomorrow and the perils of the appeal to novelty. Christopher will discuss the importance of innovation with purpose and present a path less travelled on the use and application of open data in making better decisions.

The Manual for Smart Streets
Tom Webster – Connected Places Catapult

Connected Places Catapult is working with the DfT this year to develop the Manual for Smart Streets, a guidance document that can be used in England to inform the approach to delivering cooperative traffic management services. I’d like to share with you and overview of our work to date and approach.

Our aim is to create a clear set of impactful guidance, to encourage wider adoption and standardisation of services that take advantages of technologies including co-operative ITS. To develop understanding of needs and solutions we will be engaging with local government, the cooperative ITS market, SMEs, and academia.

Watch all Symposium 2020 presentations here


Exhibition

The Symposium has had a parallel exhibition for many years and features the main companies working in traffic control. Entry to the exhibition is free for Symposium delegates.

Here are the currently confirmed exhibitors:

  • AGD
  • Aimsun
  • Aldridge Traffic Systems
  • ARTSM
  • Clearview Intelligence
  • Coeval
  • COLAS
  • Dynniq
  • Teledyne FLIR
  • JCT Consultancy
  • Highways News
  • IHE
  • ITS UK
  • NAL
  • NOW Wireless
  • Nissen
  • PTV
  • Sm@rt Technology
  • Smart Video & Sensing
  • Swarco Traffic
  • SRL
  • TRL
  • TRP
  • TWM Traffic Control Systems
  • VIAEM
  • Vivacity Labs
  • Westcotec
  • Yunex Traffic

Event Sponsors for 2021

Several major companies are kindly sponsoring events at the Symposium and Exhibition enhancing networking and subsidising key events.

The following are kindly supported by our sponsors:

  • Gala Dinner (Wednesday Evening) - Yunex Traffic
  • Barbecue Night (Tuesday Evening) - Aldridge Traffic
  • Wednesday Lunch - SRL
  • Wednesday Night Drinks Reception - Swarco
  • Evening Social Networking on Tuesday and Wednesday - Aimsun, ARTSM, Dynniq, NAL, Swarco, SRL, TRP, JCT Consultancy
  • Delegate Goody Bags - Dynniq
  • Lanyards - PTV
  • Treasure Hunt - ITS UK
  • Symposium Prizes - IHE

Further Information

If you would like any further information regarding the Symposium or Exhibition please don't hesitate to contact us at symposium@jctconsultancy.co.uk.


 

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