Abu Dhabi’s questionably Intelligent traffic plans
As Abu Dhabi announces expensive plans to establish an intelligent transportation system, Kipp thinks they’d save more by simply trying to make the drivers more intelligent.
December 24, 2010 10:37 by Samuel Potter
We will forget the 45 days we’ve been asked to deposit our passport at EIDA typing centers, we will also forget the 80,000 errors with EIDA applications authorities have had to rectify, but we are finding it really hard to forget the three long years EIDA has been taking their sweet time with establishing a deadline for getting an Emirates ID. Some find solace by dismissing these three years of threats, confusion and administrative blunders by uttering every expat’s favourite sigh of frustration: “In this part of the world…”
But what if we told you that the same place that brought you the logistical and organizational nightmare that is the Emirates ID is now planning on implementing a super-duper, larger-than-life, computerised traffic system in a bid to cut traffic?
This week The National reports that Abu Dhabi’s Department of Transport (DoT) plans to create an integrated Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) that will provide an advanced network of communication and information technology to drivers. How will they do this, you ask.
“Congestion and incident information will be relayed via bilingual, automated voice broadcasts on a highway advisory radio station.
“Dynamic messaging signs will also be installed before en-route decision points – particularly at bridges and freeway interchanges – to give drivers the latest information on the best routes to take, and ones to avoid.
“Web and mobile phone information services will also allow drivers easy access to information.”
Great, because the first thing drivers need is to be checking their SMSes, or logging onto the DoT website through their BlackBerrys while they are speeding over the Sheikh Zayed Bridge. So how much will this cutting-edge technology cost? Well the National doesn’t say, but we don’t think we’d be exaggerating to say a good few million.
Kipp has an idea: how about we spend some time teaching people to drive instead of the lane-cutting, signal-jumping, speed-limit-flaunting chaos currently practiced on UAE roads? Maybe then the country can take the money it is using to invest in this new age technology and sort out the National ID card thing once and for all.