Transport for London (TfL) says its innovation partnership with Bosch has boosted traffic flow in the capital, improved road safety and contributed towards a reduction in air pollution.

The pilot, which began in November 2018, has seen the pair collaborate on several projects, including a new traffic signal timing strategy to improve air quality in Lambeth. Using ‘floating car data’ (with HERE Technologies, in collaboration with Bosch), automatically recorded TfL traffic flow and vehicle fleet data, and Bosch air quality monitors and modelling capabilities, the project established a new traffic signal timing strategy to improve localised air quality in the London borough.

Rikesh Shah, Head of Commercial Innovation at TfL, said: “I am immensely proud of the work achieved in the past two years with Bosch through this co-innovation approach.

“By working together and sharing ideas, knowledge and data, we have moved forward to achieve things that a few short years ago we would have deemed impossible.

“We went into this with an open mind on what trials can achieve and it is by using this innovative way of working we can learn why some things didn’t work out quite as planned, and move forward with better understanding in the future.

“The smart technology available…will make it possible for us to bring new solutions to our transport network, making it a better city for us all.”

Vision Zero

Artificial intelligence and digital imaging were also used to help identify near-miss incidents at a pedestrian crossing in Lambeth, contributing towards London’s ‘vision zero’ goals.

Other projects included exploring new ideas for addressing Tube noise and advanced braking systems for buses, and working with start-ups such as Travel AI, CityMaaS and Emitwise to encourage them to come up with solutions to London’s challenges.

Arun Srinivasan, Head of Bosch Mobility Solutions UK, said: “Open knowledge sharing underpinned by TfL’s expertise and data has helped us both develop innovative approaches to technology-driven solutions and partnerships.

“TfL’s in-depth knowledge of how the city works and what it takes to keep London moving has been instrumental to the results of our innovation partnership.”

Based on the experience from the Bosch trial, TfL is developing a new framework to use as a blueprint for partnering with other firms on new co-innovation projects. In November the transit operator issued an Expression of Interest (EOI) to gauge market feedback regarding the potential creation of an Innovation Collaboration Framework to support such partnerships.

Image: TfL

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