How Digital Data and Technology Can Enhance the Traditional Design Process: TRANSPORT Smart Class, North of England 2023


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Old data capture methods can only grasp a part of what local authorities, residents and designers need to deliver successful schemes. At TRANSPORT Smart Class, North of England 2023, Project Centre’s Regional Director Chris Harrison demonstrated that by harnessing technology including Power BI analytics and real time, localised air quality data, as well as reaching residents with an online presence, local authorities and residents can be empowered to make their own informed decisions and visualise the end results of projects.

With big changes needed to connect our towns and neighbourhoods for a greener future, and pressure to deliver projects that are future-proofed and sustainable, it’s time to think dynamically. Chris’ presentation explained how to tackle this issue using tools that streamline processes. Through not just Project Centre’s experience but also using the experience of sister technology companies Vortex and Videalert, Chris explored how integrated digitalisation has progressed traditional civil engineering practices: “Empowered by data, we make choices that allow us to deliver sustainable, inclusive and accessible places for all”.

Tina Glover and Andrea Jones added their expert knowledge during Project Centre’s hosted roundtable discussions with all delegates in attendance.

Presentation highlights:

  • Decarbonising Transport: a better, greener Britain – “Climate Change Committee (CCC) analysis indicates that 59 per cent of emissions reductions to reach net zero will involve some form of societal behaviour change”;
  • DfT’s Behaviour Change Research 2020 – “multiple opportunities to change travel behaviour, but that travel decisions are driven primarily by convenience and cost, not environmental concerns”;
  • Public Health England “Health Matters” – Air pollution affects on people throughout their lifetime;
  • Air Quality – Visualising the data: air quality measurements by sensor location, time and gas pollutant, time and particulate matter;
  • Communication and engagement –  How developing new technology can be a great opportunity to drive education of the subject area: Etta Street ‘before and after’ case study (including addition of EV parking, car club, cycle hangar, disabled parking and resident permits);
  • Data analysis to inform design- LB Hammersmith & Fulham case study: alerts by capture date, vehicle category, CO2 banding, vehicle make, fuel type, Euro status and location;
  • Opportunities – 3 key elements:  1) Gathering of data to ensure we make the right choices on a local level – right design, right outcomes 2) Presentation of data in a way that’s easy to understand and analyse 3) Education – quick easy access to succinct information will continue to enable the change in behaviour at a local level;
  • Won’t this just push the problem of air pollution somewhere else? Not according to evidence from the Clean Air Neighbourhood trial to the east of Wandsworth Bridge Road, where traffic fell by 12% on the main road

If you satisfy our regular delegate qualification criteria but were unable to join in Leeds on May 25th for the live in-person event at Nexus, CLICK HERE and complete the short “Download form” (located at the bottom of the post) to receive a unique link enabling free access to the presentation video recordings and slides (including the film footage and slides from Chris’ initial presentation).

Those qualifying to receive the rich presentation content from this event include commissioning, procurement, trialling, partnering and policy leads, senior influencers, strategic decision makers and planners from local authorities (e.g. city, borough, metropolitan, district and county councils); public transport operators; regional transport partnerships, sub-regional transport bodies, combined authorities, integrated transport authorities and passenger transport executives; highways authorities and road operators; government and supporting national transport agencies; fleet operators, parking operators, prime contractors etc.

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TRANSPORT Smart Class, North of England 2023

On May 25th we will be casting a spotlight over the North of England, hosting our speakers discussions on how the latest digital innovations can help overcome the transport and mobility challenges faced by city-regions of the Northern Powerhouse and beyond.


   Leeds, UK

Sponsored by
Padam Mobility
Project Centre
Slingshot Simulations

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