Japanese technology is supporting the introduction of a sophisticated traffic control system in Bengaluru. The cutting-edge MODERATO (Management of Origin-Destination Related Adaptation for Traffic Optimization) technology-driven traffic signals, strategically placed in key junctions, are slated for activation by the end of December, according to Deepa Cholan, Commissioner of the Directorate of Urban Land Transport (DULT). Delays in implementing these signals were caused by unexpected technical challenges encountered during construction, such as the discovery of underground utilities not accounted for in the project planning. This necessitated the relocation of some poles and changes to pole designs, as well as alterations in construction methods at various locations. Comprehensive testing and calibration of the signals will precede their activation, with the current schedule aiming for a December 2023 launch.
The Japanese technology-backed Area Traffic Control System (ATCS) has been installed at 28 intersections, including those along MG Road, Hosur Road, and Old Madras Road. The ATCS employs roadside sensors to automatically adjust signal timings based on real-time traffic volume data. It is anticipated that the implementation of ATCS will result in a 30% reduction in average queue length at junctions and an improvement in average travel speeds. Following its inauguration in December, the Bengaluru traffic police will take over the operation and maintenance of the ATCS.
The traffic police had previously planned to increase the number of signals in and around the city from 363 to 500 within the next three years. This expansion strategy focuses on evidence-based and contactless interventions driven by artificial intelligence. The initiative to install these signals began in 2014 but didn’t commence until July 2021, leading to multiple delays that pushed the project beyond its original October 2022 completion deadline. The project is financially supported by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and is being executed by the Directorate of Urban Land Transport (DULT).