Can State Transportation Become Innovative?

Rachel EckertBy Rachel Eckert, Consultant

No doubt you’ve heard ofTranspInnov042816 self-driving or autonomous vehicles and connected vehicles and highways. While many of these technological innovations are still maturing, they hold significant promise for the future of transportation and significant industry opportunities. Transportation systems run outdated technology to manage an aging road infrastructure and it’s becoming increasingly difficult to handle the ever-increasing volume of traffic.

In a perfect scenario, states would rip and replace the aging roads, upgrade their systems, and seamlessly improve traffic flow. In reality, upgrading the roadway infrastructure and the legacy systems are a tall order, and budgets simply don’t accommodate their needs. States like Virginia are looking at alternatives to the old and traditional, becoming innovative and cost efficient by establishing committees like the Innovation and Technology Transportation program that look at alternate methods of improving transportation. According to a recent article in the Fredericksburg Free-Lance Star, the program is designed to be a forum for stakeholders at the state and local levels. They propose alternative and innovative ideas that skirts the traditional approval and procurement processes that bog down projects.

Committees like the one in Virginia are perfect forums for industry to propose and introduce technologies that may lack a track record. Virginia’s committee has its own six-year, $74 million budget and selects its own projects and studies. Their existing projects include items like adaptive signal technology or connected vehicles.  These technologies would leverage technologies like the “Internet of Things” to connect roadways, vehicles, and transportation officials across robust and secure networks. These projects may be years away but the opportunities to enhance networks and security protocols aren’t.

Partnering with these committees, like the Innovation and Technology Transportation program in Virginia, are great ways for industry to become part of the solution and drive the future of transportation.

Need help identifying top transportation IT decision makers and opportunities in the state and local market? Contact immixGroup’s industry-leading Market Intelligence team today to learn about specific programs and contacts that have a pressing need for your IT solution.

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